Community Government Police & Fire

Gig Harbor Council to consider putting public safety sales tax increase before voters

Posted on February 23rd, 2024 By:

The Gig Harbor City Council will consider placing a sales tax increase before voters during its meeting on Monday, Feb. 26.

If approved by voters on the Aug. 6 ballot, proceeds from the increase would support public safety efforts.

The proposal before the council would increase sales tax inside Gig Harbor city limits by 0.1%, bringing the total sales tax rate to 9.0%. The increase would generate about $1 million for the city general fund.

According to information provided by the city, one-third of the revenue generated by such a public safety sales tax increase must go directly to law enforcement expenditures. The city currently is advertising for three police officer positions.

The resolution the council will vote on, as posted in the council’s agenda for the Feb. 26 meeting, also mentions reducing homelessness and improving behavioral health as priorities.

The sales tax measure would be separate from the city’s property tax lid lift proposition, which city voters will decide on in April.

The property tax lid lift, if approved by voters, would increase property taxes inside city limits from 70 cents per thousand dollars of assessed valuation to $1.10 per thousand. The city expects the property tax increase to raise $2 million in revenues.

If voters approve both tax increases, the city would cover a $3 million shortfall in its general fund anticipated for next year. The $3 million in increased revenues would allow the city to hire for nine employment positions it left vacant to balance the budget.

The council meets at 5:30 p.m. Monday, Feb. 26, at the Civic Center at 3510 Grandview St. The meeting can also be accessed via Zoom.