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Letters to the Editor - 12/4/17

  • Written by Woodinville Weekly Staff

KING COUNTY RIGHT-OF-WAY TAX

On November 27 I received a letter from the Woodinville Water District with the heading “Notice of Utility Rate Increase Due to King County Right-Of-Way Rental Fee/Tax.”

~ I have seen nothing in print or other media announcing or even discussing this issue.
~ Apparently this was passed as an Ordinance on November 7, 2016.
~ From the date passed, only 30 days are set aside for comments. It certainly smells as a fast track to implementation.
~ If not for the WWD, I probably would not have found out about it until I questioned our various utility bill increases.
~ Every homeowner that pays for utilities could be facing an additional county tax approaching $500/year.
~ This is serious money county wide.
~ Even worse, the money collected goes to the general fund.
~ Nothing is earmarked for road improvement.

I am completely opposed to this underhanded attempt to pass new substantial tax law.

It is nothing short of a complete money grab.

I encourage each of you to voice your opinion both to your county representative and the website in the WWD letter.

Ed Ries - Woodinville

NEW COUNTY FEE / ORDIANCE 18403

Last November (2016) the council passed Ordinance 18403 (sponsored by Balducci, Upthegrove, Lambert, and Dembowski), which charges “rent” to utilities to use the King County right-of-way to help defray the costs resulting from allowing use of public property by the utilities.  While I agree with the reasoning for these fees, I do not agree with the disposition of the money.  It is to be put in the General Fund for use for anything.  This money should be used solely to defray costs resulting from use of public land by the utilities, not for housing, or jails, or administrative costs, etc.  If we allow this kind of blanket taxation our taxes will be higher, but our roads will still be falling apart.

John S. Snow - Woodinville

WOODINVILLE WATER DISTRICT ARTICLE CORRECTION

The website address in the article on King County Ordinance no. 18403, Right-of-Way Rental Fee/Tax is incorrect.  I think that your “typesetting” software condensed the address to make it fit the column.  In doing so it deleted a hyphen between facilities and management...without it the result is a 404 error message. The correct link is: http://www.kingcounty.gov/depts/facilities-management/real-estate-services/public-rule-proposal.aspx

It’s important that objections be submitted by Dec. 7th.  The ordinance number and title should be included in the comments section to be clear.

Patricia Friesen

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