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2020-2025 Parks, Recreation, Trails and Open Space Levy

On April 17, the King County Council approved a measure to renew the property tax levy supporting parks, trails, and open space in King County. The measure, which will be on the August 6 ballot, would replace the current levy that expires at the end of the year and generate an estimated $810 million over six years, costing approximately $7.60 per month for the owner of a home with an assessed property value of $500,000.

The revenue generated by this levy would mean county-wide investments in parks, trails, recreation, and open space protection for the benefit of all King County residents, no matter where they live.

In February 2019, King County Executive Dow Constantine deliver a proposal to the King County Council to renew the levy. Read about his proposal in the news release.

Learn more:

Watch this video to catch a glimpse of King County's parks and trails!

2020-2025_King_County_Parks_Recreation_Trails_Open_Space_Levy_Measure

Click the image to enlarge


2014-2019 Parks, Trails and Open Space Replacement Levy

 

The measure, which was approved by voters in 2013 by more than 70 percent, will generate an estimated $66 million per year from 2014 through 2019 through a CPI-indexed property tax levy lid lift of 18.77 cents per $1,000 of assessed value – an estimated $56 per year for the owner of a home valued at $300,000.

Read the mid-levy progress report

Levy Oversight Board

The Parks Levy Oversight Board, which is appointed by the King County Executive and consists of one representative from each council district, meets annually to review Parks' levy expenditures from the previous year and makes recommendations for implementation of the levy in the coming year.
 

History of the Parks Levy

In June 2012, King County Executive Dow Constantine convened a panel of business and civic leaders to help define a path to funding King County's parks, trails, and open space upon expiration of the then-current levies at the end of 2013. The group's recommendations shaped what ultimately become the 2014-2019 King County Parks, Trails and Open Space Replacement Levy.

Press release
: "Citizen task force recommends continued levy support of King County parks, trails, open space" - November 28, 2012.

Task Force Cover Letter to Executive Constantine
Task Force Report and Recommendations

The group met from June to October 2012. Meeting agendas and other materials can be found here.

In 2007, King County voters approved two property tax levy lid lifts to support park operations and open space and trails for the period of 2008 - 2013. 

As required by the levy legislation, a nine-member, Council-appointed Levy Citizen Oversight Board was established to monitor the expenditure of levy proceeds. 

COB Report on 2013 Expenditures
COB Report on 2012 Expenditures
COB Report on 2011 Expenditures
COB Report on 2010 Expenditures 
COB Report on 2008-2009 Expenditures

In 2002, confronted with a $52 million general fund crisis, King County faced the very real possibility of closing parks, pools, and recreational programs. From that crisis arose the King County Parks of today, a mission-focused, streamlined, levy-funded agency with an entrepreneurial approach to operations and partnerships.

Learn more about the 2002 Parks Business Transition Plan.