Proposition 11: Replacement EMS Levy
On the November 7, 2023, General Election Ballot Proposition 11 will ask voters to renew the expiring EMS Levy. Washougal voters last renewed the EMS Levy at a rate of fifty cents ($.50) per $1,000 of assessed valuation in the 2018 General Election.
The State of Washington created voter approved EMS levies to give communities the ability to provide a stable, dedicated funding source to help pay for the provision of emergency medical services. Washougal voters have repeatedly approved an EMS levy over the decades. The current EMS levy will expire at the end of 2023.
What is an EMS Levy?
An EMS levy is a property tax levy specifically designed and used for the provision of emergency medical services in communities.
What will the EMS Levy be used for?
The Camas-Washougal Fire Department has provided emergency medical services and ambulance transport services for decades. EMS levy funds are restricted to providing EMS services and will be used to continue the provision of these services in our community.
How long will the new rate be in place?
The proposition would authorize the City to assess an EMS levy for six years (2024-2029).
Why is the City seeking a replacement EMS Levy?
The EMS levy is a dedicated source of funding used for the provision of emergency medical services in Washougal. The City of Washougal has experienced an 11% increase in EMS Apparatus Responses to Washougal EMS calls between 2018 and 2022. Replacing the expired EMS levy is necessary to maintain Washougal’s current level of emergency medical services. Proposition 11 will establish stable funding for essential lifesaving services for the years 2024-2029.
How will the Replacement EMS Levy affect my tax rate?
If voters approve the proposed Replacement EMS Levy for emergency services, the City Council will assess a levy in 2023 for collection in 2024 that will result in an EMS levy rate of not more than fifty cents ($.50) per $1,000 of assessed value. For the years 2024-2029, the EMS Levy will increase by a maximum of 1% per year and the levy rate is projected to decrease slightly due to increases in assessed value in the City. The levy rate cannot exceed fifty cents ($.50) per $1,000 of assessed value.
What if the Replacement EMS Levy fails?
Without the replacement of the EMS levy, Washougal will need to shift other existing general fund revenues to be able to maintain current EMS service levels. This shift could impact service levels in Fire/EMS, police, parks, streets and other public services. The city would attempt to mitigate the impact of the funding shortfall but the level of service in one or more of these areas would likely be impacted.
How Do I Vote?
Ballots for the November 7, 2023, election will be mailed October 20 and must be postmarked by November 7, or dropped at a ballot box by 8 pm on November 7. For information on how to register to vote, please go to Registering to Vote | Clark County (wa.gov). For ballot deposit locations please go to Ballot deposit locations | Clark County (wa.gov)