Why we should support police station effort

  • Monday, March 24, 2014 2:03pm
  • Opinion

 

The City of Sequim and the community have a problem – we have no Police Station and have been renting space in a shopping mall for the last 17 years. Our City Hall was built 38 years ago and is too small to accommodate today’s needs. As a result, we spend $200,000 per year to rent office space. 

As Mayor and on behalf of the City Council, we believe it would be irresponsible not to propose a solution to this problem.

We have placed a public safety sales tax measure on the ballot on August 7 which will generate revenue to build a new Police Station and emergency operations center. The proposed sales tax is one-tenth of one percent which will increase the tax on a $10 purchase by one penny.

If voters approve the public safety sales tax, the revenue generated will provide the foundation for the City to leverage other revenues and allow us to build both a Police Station and City Hall. 

This will allow the City to save money on the project by consolidating many common functions in one building that serves as a Police Station and City Hall. For example, the City now rents space for meeting rooms, lunchrooms, restrooms, copy centers and storage space in two different locations.

Any increase in taxes should always be questioned and justified, however, no one has questioned the need for the City to have a Police Station and a City Hall that meets the needs of the City as we move into our second century of incorporation. 

The voters of the City will decide whether the time is right to approve the public safety sales tax and make this community investment.

The City Council decided to propose a sales tax to finance the new Police Station because this tax is collected from not just those living inside the City, but also from those who travel throughout the region to shop at our retail center. We estimate that two-thirds of the sales tax collected comes from non-City residents. 

Although we are very fortunate to have a healthy regional retail base, the activity that comes along with the shoppers requires increased police support and other services.

We are all fortunate to live in the City of Sequim and enjoy the quality-of-life that is unique to the North Olympic Peninsula. 

I urge you to support the public safety sales tax on Aug. 7; however, regardless of the outcome of the election, we will continue to provide excellent police and other services to support our community.

Ken Hays is Mayor of the City of Sequim.

More in Opinion

Guest opinion: Gov. Inslee flexes political muscle in drive for clean air legislation

In 2015, after another session without procuring a key weapon in his… Continue reading

How our lawmakers voted

After a key deadline on March 13, the last day to pass… Continue reading

Think About It: Land use is the people’s work

We learned during the government shutdown that 40 percent of Americans have… Continue reading

Guest opinion: Resetting state view on helping those with substance abuse

In opioid epidemic, a lawmaker wants recovery to be on the same pedestal as treatment and prevention

How our lawmakers voted

State lawmakers were busy last week acting on bills before the whole… Continue reading

Daylight saving all the time proposed for Washington state

Residents could have the option to vote on permanent daylight saving time

From the Back Nine: The Case of the Missing Shovels

It started last year during the only snow that amounted to much.… Continue reading

How our lawmakers voted

As this year’s scheduled 105-day legislative session nears the halfway point, state… Continue reading

Letters to the editor — March 6, 2019

Kilmer shows his colors With reference to “Power circuits interrupt us” (commentary… Continue reading

Water Matters: Circles, cycles, but no conclusions

In the past few months I’ve realized that my fixation on cycles… Continue reading

Aging Successfully: Brain exercises (one of the best)

Brain plasticity, also called neuroplasticity, is the term used to describe the… Continue reading

Guest opinion: Dems may seek more revenue (taxes) for wish list

Democratic legislative leaders are gearing up for one of the most challenging… Continue reading