The City collects two types of property tax; one for general operations, and a second for emergency medical services (EMS) that was approved by voters.
There are two options the Council can take regarding the assessment of the 2015 general property tax levy. The two options are:
1. Levy the property taxes without any increase
2. Increase the property tax levy by one percent.
City staff is recommending a general levy property tax increase of one percent and an EMS Levy property tax increase that would set the EMS levy at $0.50 per $1,000 adjusted value, which is consistent with the 2015-16 Proposed Budget and the Six Year Financial Forecast.
This would result in an $11 Increase per average residence per year, keeping total average property taxes paid below other Snohomish County Cities but will generate $157,417 in additional revenue for the City.
The City Council is scheduled to consider adoption of the 2015-2016 Biennial Budget Ordinance.
The Ordinance included the retroactive invoice from Fire District 1 for payment of 2013-14 Fire Contract Services. The increase was due to the settlement of the Local 1828 Labor Union Contract.
The billing for 2013 Fire District 1 Contract Services is $309,004 and the billing for 2014 Fire District 1 Contract Services is $352,319 with the total due amounting to $661,223. $107,000 will be paid by Dec. 31 from the 2014 budget and the remaining amount due in 2015-16 is $554,323.
The Council also is set to consider adopting a resolution adopting case weighting for public defender misdemeanor cases. In case weighting, the State assigns a weight to each case based on its complexity. Under the State’s model case weighting policy, a charge of driving with a suspended license is considered to count as a fraction of a case, while a charge of driving under the influence is assigned a case weight of greater than one case.
In reviewing the cases handled by the City’s public defender in 2013, City staff said that it is apparent Mountlake Terrace has a high number of simple offenses, and therefore it is better to use the case weighting program with its limit of 300 cases rather than the 400 case limit, which is the other option.