Washougal plans for two tax increases in 2015 budget

Town Hall to be held Nov. 8

The preliminary budget for the City of Washougal is at an all time high of $51.17 million.

It includes $13.5 million for the expansion of the wastewater treatment plant at 3900 state Route 14.

The 2015 operating budget assumes that the council will adopt a one percent increase in the overall property tax levy, and that Proposition 5 will be approved by voters in the Nov. 4 General Election. That proposition would replace a levy lid lift that expired at the end of 2012.

Proposition 5 would support emergency medical and fire services, at a cost of 10 cents per $1,000 of assessed valuation.

Funding for an additional police officer and related public safety enhancements are also included in the preliminary budget. Proposition 6, on next week’s ballot, would provide funding to add the officer and pay for enhancements such as additional code enforcement efforts.

The six-year levy lid lift would cost 10 cents per $1,000 of assessed valuation.

A proposal for use of the city’s unrestricted general fund reserves would involve $210,000 to complete repairs to a deteriorated portion of Lookout Ridge Drive.

Other preliminary budget items include:

o $1.4 million for improvements at the intersection of Evergreen Way and 32nd Street

o $50,000 for the Camas-Washougal Economic Development Association

o $5,000 for the Columbia River Economic Development Council

o $7,500 for East County Social Services

o $5,000 for Washougal Community Education & Recreation

o $3,000 for the Clark County Alcoholism Program

o $6,000 for a planter bench project at the Washougal Memorial Cemetery

o $8,000 for a gazebo at Beaver Park

o $125,000 for a crane truck

o $95,000 for a mini excavator/trailer

o $21,000 for a sedan for the public works department

o $12,000 for improvements to the police department parking lot

o $89,000 for utility bill assistance for low income citizens

A budget town hall is scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 8, in City Hall, 1701 “C” St. The tentative start time is 9 a.m.

A public hearing on the budget will be held during the council meeting Monday, Nov. 10, at 7 p.m. After the hearing, the budget will be presented for adoption.