By Richard Van Winkle, News of Mill Creek, November 9, 2019.
Tax and spend decisions are difficult to make for elected officials and require much discussion.
Every November the Mill Creek City Council is required to set property tax and EMS levy rates for the next year. Here in 2019, the deadline for making this decision is November 26th.
Although the city’s 2019-2020 budget is reported to be on track with higher than expected revenue and lower than expected expenditures, proposed budget amendments for 2020 may require an increase in property tax and EMS levies.
The city council made a number of decisions that require budget amendments this year. Hiring a new city manager and borrowing over $3,000,000 to fund the city’s surface water program are two examples.
Washington State requires cities and counties to keep their budgets reconciled and up to date. The deadline for this year’s mid-biennial review is December 31st, but City Manager Michael Ciaravino hopes to nail down the budget amendments by December 3rd.
On November 5th city staff presented the schedule and framework for the upcoming tax and spend decisions as follows:
- November 12th - Continued budget amendment discussions.
- November 26th - Property Tax and EMS Levy and Budget Amendment Public Hearings to collect public comments and continued discussions. The city council plans to adopt the 2020 Property Tax and EMS Levy.
- December 3rd - Adoption of Budget Amendments.
The city council welcomes public comments at all city council meetings and encourages public participation.
Editor’s note: This article was changed on November 10, 2019, to reflect the Property Tax and EMS Levy Public Hearing date. The City of Mill Creek did not notify News of Mill Creek of this change even though the Washington State Open Public Meetings Act requires this to be done.