Wednesday, October 31, 2012

UPDATED: Evergreen Hospital to hold budget hearing and educational session - Commissioners propose raising the 2013 Regular levy

UPDATED 11/13/2012:  Correction:  On November 9th, the Commission voted to approve a $154,982 (2.1%) Regular Levy increase totaling $15,822,629 for 2013. 

The Evergreen Health Hospital Budget Hearing and Educational Session will take place on Friday, November 9th at 7:00 a.m. in Tan 250 of the Physicians and Surgeons Building.  The Board of Commissioners will be approving the most recent allocation of General Obligation Bonds from King County which aligns with the most recent taxation.  According to Laurene Burton, Government Affairs, the Commisssion is not voting on any proposals or increases to the 2013 Regular Property Tax Levy itself.  The public is invited to sit in on the Educational Session and speak at the Budget Hearing.

The Hearing offers the public an opportunity to give input into how Regular levy dollars are allocated for expenditure and to learn where the hospital spends it's $15,285,968 levy funds to promote community health and wellness.   Currently, 74% of the regular levy monies are allocated to paying debt service for growth and 26% for "health and wellness."  The 24-hour nurse line is one program Evergreen provides - similar to many health insurer programs.   Some citizens want to see more funding for "hands-only" cardiac resuscitation. 

The Board will vote to fund the $9,242,180 General Obligation bond excess levy to pay down a $112.7M bond approved by voters on November 10, 2004.  The bond raises money to pay for Evergreen Hospital's Emergency Department in Kirkland and the Silver Tower surgical aftercare beds. 

The Board of Commissioners raised the Regular Property Tax Levy 1% in 2012,  2.1% in 2011 and 1.7% in 2010.  Commissioners Greenfield and Hirt are up for re-election in 2013.  The Commission accepts public comment on the 3rd Tuesday of every month in the Public Meeting Room, Tan #250. 

By Bob Yoder

King County Public Hospital District No. 2, was established in 1972 to serve citizens in north King and south Snohomish counties. Registered voters in District number 155,154 (2010). Serving more than 400,000 citizens every year and three school districts, the District operates a 290-bed hospital and a network of primary and urgent care centers. Evergreen Healthcare district boundaries include Bothell, Duvall, Kenmore, Kirkland, Redmond, Woodinville, part of Sammamish and parts of unincorporated northeast King County. The District’s specialties include a maternity center, a cancer center, hospice and home health care, 24-hour emergency care, a critical care unit, cardiac care and surgical services.

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