Budget restores some cuts, hikes taxes

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Posted: Wednesday, September 11, 2013 12:00 am

A week after Bellevue residents spoke out against a restaurant tax but expressed a general willingness to accept higher property taxes, the City Council Monday night gave them what they asked for.

The budget for the 2013-14 fiscal year, which passed on a 4-1 vote, eliminates projects in order to maintain services.

The result is a lower spending increase, falling from $68 million to $65 million, and, in the absence of a 2.5 percent restaurant tax, an additional penny on property taxes.

Property taxes, which were to climb 3.5 cents this year from 55.5 cents per $100 of assessed valuation to 59 cents, will now climb 4.5 cents to 60 cents, and will climb to 61 cents for the 2014-15 year.

Many proposed cuts in services were removed.

The Fire Department will not impose a system of rolling brownouts where one of the city’s four fire stations is closed every day.

To compensate for that re-instated expense, the department will hire only nine full-time firefighters instead of 12 and those nine will not be hired until April.

Nine support positions in the police department were restored.

Eight other positions in various department, cut in the initial budget proposal, were restored.

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