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North Highline Fire District

Proposition No. 1

Authorization for Continuation of Benefit Charge


Shall North Highline Fire District be authorized to continue voter-authorized benefit charges each year for ten consecutive years, not to exceed an amount equal to sixty percent of its operating budget, and be prohibited from imposing an additional property tax under RCW 52.16.160?



North Highline Fire District provides emergency medical, and fire protection service to the areas within North Highline Fire District. The Board of Commissioners is requesting that voters approve the continuation of the existing benefit charge to replace the expiring benefit charge approved by the voters in 2014. 

A benefit charge is not a property tax but is a user fee designed to allocate the cost of the services provided by the District in reasonable proportion to the measurable benefit a property receives. The benefit charge is based on a standard industry accepted formula that takes into consideration fire flows, structure square footage and the type of structure. If the benefit charge is approved the District’s statutory tax authority is reduced by $.50 per thousand of assessed valuation.

The Board of Commissioners has determined that a benefit charge, established in conjunction with a lower level of property taxes, provides the fairest, most stable, reliable and cost effective method for financing the operations of the District and maintaining satisfactory levels of service.

The proposition requests voters to authorize the continuation of the benefit charge to be collected for an additional ten years from 2021 through 2030. The benefit charge will be established by November 30th of each year for collection the following year. Prior to establishing the benefit charge each year, the Board of Commissioners will hold a public hearing and each year property owners will have the right to petition for adjustments in the amount of the benefit charge. 

Vote Yes for Proposition One to renew North Highline Fire District’s (NHFD) Benefit Charge.  Proposition One will ensure our current level of service and keep our community and firefighters safe while bringing fiscal equity to North Highline property owners. 
We all benefit from the NHFD Benefit Charge.  Over the last six years, the Benefit Charge has enabled the NHFD to significantly reduce response times and secure desperately needed equipment for our firefighters.  Because of the Benefit Charge, NHFD has become a fiscally stable provider of high-quality fire protection and emergency care. 

The Benefit Charge is a fee, not a tax, and is based on factors such as size, use of buildings and fire risk.  It creates a more equitable distribution of charges because it spreads NHFD’s costs between more property owners in the North Highline Unincorporated Area.  The Benefit Charge will ensure the continued reduction of our NHFD property taxes from $1.50 to $1.00 per $1,000 of assessed value.  Tax exemptions for senior citizens and disabled persons also apply to the Benefit Charge.

Vote Yes to support our North Highline Fire District and maintain our high quality service!

Barbara Dobkin, Wendell Davis,

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 52.18.050)

For questions about this measure, contact: Mike Marrs, Fire Chief, (206) 243-0330,

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