Pete, with his companion Nina, served as “the foundation” of the zoo’s gorilla program when he first arrived in Seattle in 1969. Photo courtesy of Dennis Dow / Woodland Park Zoo

Pete, with his companion Nina, served as “the foundation” of the zoo’s gorilla program when he first arrived in Seattle in 1969. Photo courtesy of Dennis Dow / Woodland Park Zoo

Prop 1 would fund parks, zoos and open spaces

King County voters could approve the renewal and increase of the levy on the August ballot.

King County voters will be asked to approve a renewal and expansion of a property tax levy on the August ballot. The levy will fund parks, zoos and trails across the county.

Proposition 1 would provide funding for county and city park districts as well as facilities like Woodland Park Zoo, the Seattle Aquarium and trails. It would authorize another six-year property tax beginning in 2020 at $.1832 per $1,000 of assessed property value. It only requires a simple majority, or more than 50 percent of voters, to approve it.

King County owns and operates about 28,000 acres of parks and more than 175 miles of trails. Three prior levies have been approved by county voters in 2003, 2007 and 2013. The most recent levy expires at the end of 2019. During the last two cycles, towns and cities in King County have additionally received funding from the levies.

The campaign in favor of the proposition had raised more than $200,000 as of July 1. No groups opposed to the levy had registered with the Public Disclosure Commission as of July 1. The largest donors supporting the levy included the Woodland Park Zoological Society, which had donated more than $121,500 and the Seattle Aquarium which donated $50,000. A support statement for the proposition said it would raise the typical homeowner’s property taxes by around $2.28 a month over the current levy.

In the 2008 and 2013 levies, towns and cities could use proceeds from the tax for open space and natural land acquisitions and to develop local trails that supported connections to regional systems. According to the levy text, about 500,000 people in King County live without easy access to parks and open spaces, especially for under-served populations like people with disabilities.

The August levy would exempt low-income seniors, disabled veterans and others with disabilities from the regular property tax increase on their homes.

As much as $8 million could be sent to the Seattle Aquarium to be used for capital costs for the Ocean Pavilion project. As much as $44 million would go to publicly owned pools, and $22 million to habitat restoration and open space purchasing.

The rest of the levy would be used for open spaces and an equity grant program as well as preserving and conserving open spaces and natural areas. Some 8 percent of levy proceeds would go to towns and cities in the county, and 5 percent of the levy proceeds would go to the Woodland Park Zoological Society for environmental education, horticulture and maintenance of buildings and grounds as well as species conservation.

More in News

Family finishes Tour du Mont Blanc

The Tour is a 110-mile hike through multiple European counties.

Local artists return for second Freestyle event

It’s an opportunity to watch artists create their work, and then even have a chance to buy it at the end.

Vaping illness and vitamin E connected | Department of Health

A new study by the CDC found vitamin E acetate to be present in those who have been afflicted with the mysterious vaping lung illness.

Buckley budget available to public

The city council is also talking about a new EMS levy, with a public hearing on Nov. 12.

Election wrap-up: King, Pierce voters disagree on statewide measures

The election hasn’t been certified as of yet, but the results are likely to remain how they are now.

A King County judge found the company misled customers into thinking it was a charity. Photo courtesy of the state Attorney General’s office
Judge rules Value Village deceived customers

The King County judge found the company misled customers into thinking it was a charity.

Contributed photos.
                                Donna May (Douglas) Jokumsen, left, and Kevin Dale Jokumsen, right.
Suspect in 1987 cold case acquitted, not enough evidence

Kevin Dale Jokumsen, 56, was charged with second-degree for allegedly murdering his wife. After two years, the case finally went to trial — or would have, if a judge didn’t throw it out.

King County will challenge legality of I-976

County Executive Dow Constantine: ‘We must clean up another mess that Tim Eyman has created for our state, our region, and our economy’

Voters are narrowly rejecting affirmative action

The no camp on affirmative action is winning by just over one point.

Most Read