The following is an update sent to some Kent business owners today by Andrea Keikkala, Executive Director of the Kent Chamber of Commerce. It’s an update on the Kent City Council’s action at last night’s meeting. Thanks, Andrea, for allowing us to reprint your update. Emphasis added by iLoveKent.net.
Thank you, for your time and hard work to quickly learn about the B&O Tax issue and Kent’s infrastructure funding challenges. Last night the City of Kent Council did NOT pass a proposed B&O Tax. The vote came down 5 to 2 on an ordinance that would have put into place a .2 B&O Tax on Warehouses only. However, a Resolution was passed that solidifies the continued work of the business community and the city of Kent to come up with $4-6 million by the end of the year in a revenue generating mechanism. Be that, B&O, Head Tax, Door Tax, etc.
Section 2 of Statement of Intent Resolutions – “ The city council will consider all available revenue structures, including, without limitation, a Business and Occupation Tax, a Business License Tax, a Transportation Benefit District, and any other tax or fee structure that will best serve the needs of the people to have well maintained streets while imposing the least and fairest burden on the business community of Kent” This resolution passed the council on a 6 to 1 vote.
The hard work is just beginning. The City of Kent Council talked a lot about trust, hope and their desire to keep the business community at the table. We need to make sure we follow through and do our part. This is an opportunity for the business community to give input on the economic vitality of Kent and guide the process. Please make sure that you make time to be at this table. We will be gathering information, mapping out next steps and will call for a follow up meeting with the business community shortly to review all taxing mechanisms available.
As we requested, the City of Kent also passed a resolution to hire an outside consulting firm to do an efficiencies study. This was passed by council unanimously.
Also, as requested by the Kent Chamber, a Levy Lid Lift of $.37/1000 assessed valuation will be put on the ballot this November. This resolution passed the City of Kent council on a 4 to 3 vote.
Again, thank you all for your work on this issue. Thank you for your phone calls, emails and discussion. I look forward to working with you in the near future.