City of Chewelah Annexation Questions
· The question of “Shall the City of Chewelah be annexed to and be part of the Stevens County Rural Library District?” will be on the April 23, 2013 ballot.
· Ballots will be mailed on April 5, 2013.
· Only registered voters in the City of Chewelah will vote on this question.
· The City of Chewelah pays for the election costs.
If the City does annex into the Library District, what will it cost me?
Property owners in the City of Chewelah would currently pay .39 per $1,000 of assessed valuation for the library:
· For $100,000 property value the annual payment would be $39 per year or $3.25 per mo.
· For $200,000 property value the annual payment would be $78 per year or $6.5 per mo.
What happens to the current library if annexation doesn’t pass? The residents of the City of Chewelah would not have access to a public library. The City of Chewelah has eliminated funding for a public library. The Library District would continue to provide library services to rural residents in the middle of the county (though perhaps not in the current building). The people residing in Chewelah will not be able to get a library card at any other Stevens County libraries.
If annexation passes can Chewelah residents use all the libraries in Stevens County? Yes! Chewelah residents will be able to use not only their Chewelah Library, but also all the libraries in Stevens County; without annexation they will lose that privilege.
If annexation passes will the library hours be restored? Yes. The hours and services will be restored to resemble those have existed in the past. There will, however, be a total net loss of library funding by about $25,000 because the City used to budget about $100,000 per year for the library, and if annexation passes, revenue collected will be about $75,000. Therefore, not all hours or services may be restored.
When will the hours be restored? January 1, 2014. Even though the election is in April of 2013, revenue collection doesn’t begin until the following calendar year.
Why can’t we just go on having a Chewelah Library like we always have? The Chewelah City Council has voted to eliminate library funding for the residents of Chewelah. County residents already pay to fund a library on their tax bills.
What is annexation? Cities inside Stevens County can choose to annex into (be part of) the Rural Library District (Springdale, Marcus, and Northport have already annexed). If a City does annex, this means that the City no longer budgets for their library out of their general fund, and that the property owners pay the same library tax as their neighbors in the county.
I heard that the City of Chewelah will be decreasing the electrical rate, so if annexation passes, will the amounts kind of even out? Not quite. With changes made by Chewelah City Council, electric utility costs will decrease by $7/month per household. But, the water and sewer utility taxes increased, and a garbage tax was initiated, costing the average household $4/month. The overall savings (without the library tax) would be $3/month for most households. The library tax would cost the average household about $4.50/month. So, the overall tax increase (all utility taxes + the library tax) for the “average” homeowner in Chewelah would be $1.50 per month.
Is the situation the same for residents of the City who live at the Golf Course? No. Since residents at the golf course pay for water and garbage service, but not sewer and electrical utility (they are Avista customers), those residents are going to see only a tax increase and no savings from the decrease in the electrical utility fee.
How can I figure out how much I’d pay to the library if annexation passes? Take the total value of your property(s), divide by 1,000, and then multiply by .39. For example, the median house value in Chewelah is:
140x.39=$54.60 per year, or $4.55 per month.
For more information, please contact:
Amanda Six, Director, Stevens County Rural Library District: firstname.lastname@example.org 509-675-5102