POLICY DATABASE
Seattle, Wash. Ord. No. 122749 (July 31, 2008)
Brief Summary
The ordinance created a ballot measure to be voted on in the next general election about whether the city should lift the limit on property taxes that could be levied to collect funds to support Seattle Parks and Green Spaces program, to allow for acquisition of land for neighborhood parks, playfields, community gardens, and other types of green spaces, the development of these types of spaces, and the development of environmental projects (including forest and stream restoration, community gardens and shoreline access). According to the Growing Food Connections database, the levy lift was approved.
Legal Strategies
Creates a fund, enables access to a funding stream.
Requires something, sets standards.
Reach
Limited scope. It creates a ballot measure for approval by referendum - it is not a final law.
Food System Category: Grow, Get
State: Washington
Jurisdiction Type: City
Jurisdiction Name: Seattle
Does the law refer to priority populations in some way?
Yes. The Oversight Committee for the Opportunity Fund will assess whether projects identified by neighborhood and community groups meet the criteria of addressing underserved communities (Sec. 3.A.3.b).
Does the law refer to or suggest a goal related to improving or protecting health?
Yes. Critera include--whether proposed projects address immediate health or safety problems --section 3.A.3(d).
Does the law refer to or suggest a goal of fostering improved environmental conditions?
Yes. "solving major challenges including climate change, the health of our waterways, or growth management" Section 3.A.3.e.
Does the law refer to or suggest a goal related to promoting or supporting the community's economy?
No.
Does the law include findings (including jurisdiction-specific findings), or are there findings in the larger section, title, article, or chapter which the law is part of?
Yes. Findings include the city of Seattle's numerous efforts around creating green infrastructure and urban sustainability efforts, restoring and maintaining healthy urban forests, supporting public access improvements to shoreline street ends, expanding the community gardening program, strengthening Seattle's food system, sustainability and security, and creating the Parks and Green Spaces Levy Citizens' Advisory Committee (pages 1 and 2 of the ordinance).
Does the law have a stated intent or purpose, or is there an intent or purpose in the larger section, title, article, or chapter which the law is part of?
Yes. The ordinance proposes that the City levy regular property taxes for up to six years in excess of the limitation on levies for the purposes of acquiring, developing, or restoring, existing or new parks, recreation facilities, cultural facilities, green spaces, playfields, trails, community gardens, and shoreline areas (page 1 of the ordinance).
Does the law include definitions, or are there definitions in the section, title, article, or chapter which the law is part of?
Yes. Section 1.
Does the law address implementation in some way?
Yes. The ordinance includes the duties and responsibilities of the Oversight Committee in relation to reviewing expenditure, advising upon expenditures and future allocations, and providing recommendations on the implementation of particular projects and any reallocations (Section 5). "The finance director is authorized to create other funds, subfunds, or accounts as may be needed to implement the purposes of this ordinance" (Section 4); proposal process and permitted use of funds (Sec 3).
Are there enforcement provisions that identify specific penalties or consequences for non-compliance?
No.
Does the law include an evaluation component, beyond reporting on activity?
No.
Does the law require an extra or atypical financial or resource investment?
No.
Code context and ordinance history
Uncodified ordinance No. 122749, Council bill no. 116274, recommending that a tax levy proposal be put for vote by referendum. Relevant pages that were coded were p. 5-14 of the linked PDF.