NPI's Cascadia Advocate

Offering commentary and analysis from Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Tuesday, November 5th, 2013

King County Medic One renewal levy passing overwhelmingly with 80%+ in favor

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.

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