King County voters have given a big thumbs up to Medic One, approving a levy that renews funding for emergency medical response services for several more years and ensuring that King County remains the best place in the world to be in the very unfortunate event of a heart attack (or cardiac arrest, to use the scientific term).
In initial returns, the levy was doing extremely well, with 83.26% of voters in support. Only 16.74% were opposed. The levy needed a supermajority to pass (at least sixty percent). It’s getting that, and then some.
The levy is still short of the minimum vote threshold for passage, but by the time the election is certified, it ought to be over that hurdle. Levies like King County Proposition #1 have to comply with what’s called the sixty/forty rule, which requires that sixty percent of voters vote yes, and forty percent of voters turn out.
The minimum number of yes votes required is 234,736. Currently, there are 207,099 yes votes. The explanatory statement for the levy notes that Proposition #1 would fund Medic One for six additional years:
If approved by voters, Proposition No. 1 would authorize King County to levy a regular property tax at a rate not to exceed $0.335 per one thousand dollars of assessed valuation on all taxable property within the county. The levy proceeds would be used to fund county-wide Medic One emergency medical services as more fully described in Ordinance No. 17598 and RCW 84.52.069. The levy would be authorized for a six-year period, with collection beginning in 2014. The levy would be exempt from the rate limitations in RCW 84.52.043, but would be subject to the chapter 84.55 RCW limitations on levy increases in years two through six.
Keeping Medic One funded was a no-brainer — it’s one of our vital public services that enriches our quality of life. Medic One is worth every penny. We’re pleased to see it winning so massively, though it’d be nice if it could just be an accepted part of our county budget, and not contingent on a successful public vote every few years.