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South King Fire and Rescue

Proposition No. 1
Re-Establishing Property Tax Levy Rate

The Board of South King Fire and Rescue adopted Resolution No. 543 concerning an increase in the District’s regular property tax levy. For the purpose of maintaining current levels of fire and emergency medical services, this proposition would restore the District’s regular property tax levy to a rate of $1.50 per $1,000 of assessed valuation for collection in 2019, set the limit factor at 6% (but not to exceed a rate of $1.50) for each of the five succeeding years (2020 – 2024), and use the 2024 levy dollar amount to compute the limitations for subsequent levies, all as provided in Resolution No. 543. Should this proposition be approved:



South King Fire and Rescue, serving the citizens of Greater Federal Way and Des Moines, is placing a multi-year lid lift proposition on the August 7th, 2018 ballot. This proposition will re-authorize the property tax levy rate at $1.50 per $1,000 of assessed valuation for 2019, coupled with annual increases of up to 6% in each of the five subsequent years.  The proposition is presented to allow voters to override the limitation imposed by Initiative 747, which would otherwise limit total property tax revenue to 101% of the previous year’s revenue, regardless of the authorized dollar rate limitation of $1.50, which voters approved in 2001.

This proposition meets the requirement of Initiative 747, that any revenue increase greater than 1%, over the previous year, be approved by the voters.  Legislation passed in 2006 allows junior taxing districts to propose multi-year lid lifts to voters.

Approval of this proposition would allow maintaining the current level of services.  Rejection of this proposition would lead to the loss of well over $1.2 million annually in projected tax revenues, which would necessitate cutbacks in services, possible layoff of personnel, potential elimination of special services such as rescue teams, and similar cutbacks.

South King Fire & Rescue (SKFR) needs your support to reinstate the previous fire district levy rate. The lid lift allows the district to collect what is allowable by law to fund critical services.

Growing Demand for Service. Development and population growth contributes to more 911 calls daily. SKFR has seen a 24% increase in emergency responses since 2013. Calls for fire, medical, and other life-threatening incidents now exceed 20,000 a year!

Not a New Tax. This is not a new tax.  It re-establishes the previous levy rate of $1.50 per thousand of assessed property valuation (currently $1.43) and re-authorizes the “lifting” the lid on the one percent limitations imposed by Initiative 747 in 2001. Lifting the lid allows district funding to adjust with inflation, but not exceed six percent each year.

Support Fire. Despite increasing demand for service, funding options for fire districts are limited. Without this critical funding, SKFR would be forced to limit growth and resources at a time when our community needs more. Strained resources ultimately result in slower response times and a lower quality of service.

Vote Yes! Please Vote Yes to maintain high quality fire department services to our community!

Submitted by: Ed Plumlee, Jim Ferrell, Matt Pina

No statement submitted.

Statements in favor of and in opposition to a ballot measure are submitted by committees appointed by the jurisdiction. No persons came forward to serve on the committee and to write a statement in opposition. If you would like to be involved with a committee in the future please contact the jurisdiction.

 Simple majority (RCW 84.55.050)

For questions about this measure, contact: Allen Church, Fire Chief, 253-946-7258,

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