Policy 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.

Background Information

State Washington
Jurisdiction Name Seattle
Jurisdiction Type City,
Population Size 200,000-800,000
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;

Policy Details

Refers to priority populations?

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).

Emergency management?
Health-related linkage?

Critera include--whether proposed projects address immediate health or safety problems --section 3.A.3(d)

Environmental linkage?

"solving major challenges including climate change, the health of our waterways, or growth management" Section 3.A.3.e.

Economic linkage?

Includes findings?

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).

Has a stated intent or purpose?

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).

Includes definitions?

Section 1

Addresses implementation?

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).

Enforcement provisions?

Evaluation component?

Requires extra investment?

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.


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