Snohomish County Council approves criminal sales tax

May 9, 2016, 6:52 AM | Updated: 11:57 am
seattle drugs...
A bag of heroin. (KIRO 7)
(KIRO 7)

A new tax that would generate more revenue for law enforcement to fight a number of problems, include a heroin epidemic, is headed to voters in Snohomish County.

People living in Snohomish County will vote on a higher sales tax on the August ballot.

The Snohomish County Council voted 4-1 for the proposed criminal justice sales tax to battle problems related to heroin addiction and homelessness, KIRO 7 reports.

If approved by voters, the county-wide tax would add more deputies and fund their training to better deal with addicts.

A recent report by the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office found one in 15 heroin deaths in the state is happening in the county.

The proposal for a 0.2 percent sales tax increase would appear on the Aug. 2 ballot if the county decides to go forward.

If approved, the tax would go into effect in January 2017 and would add 2 cents to every $10 purchase, an estimated household cost of about $95 extra a year.

A woman who lives in Everett says she’s willing to pay more taxes if it helps clean up the streets.

“There are so many drug dealers anywhere I look. I know there are cops but they can only do so much they can’t cover it all,” said Brianna Putnam.

The cities of Mill Creek and Monroe would be hit hardest, as they already have a similar sales tax in place within their jurisdictions.

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Snohomish County Council approves criminal sales tax