Update: The City Council also approved a series of new and increased taxes last night, including a higher property tax, new business tax and an increase in utility taxes.
Councilman Jim Smith was disappointed in the results. “I passionately requested that the Council not raise these taxes and voted ‘no’ on each one of them. Many people are hurting right now, and these new taxes, including the $20 car tab tax), on top of the taxes added these last four years, will have a devastating effect on our citizens,” he said in an e-mail to Lynnwood Today.
By a 6-to-1 vote, the Lynnwood City Council decided Monday night to add a new $20 fee to vehicle registrations within the city limits. Councilman Jim Smith was the lone dissenting vote.
The fee will be collected starting in June 2011 and will generate about $420,000 per year for road projects.
Tim Eyman, who lives in neighboring Mukilteo, spoke against the car tab fees. “Voters have been very clear about wanting to vote on higher car tabs and it’s not a good reason for the Council to justify ignoring voters by saying ‘but we really need the money,'” he said.
Twenty dollars is the highest fee that can be enacted without a public vote. A sales tax increase, which also requires voter approval, was another option. Councilman Ted Hikel didn’t rule out asking the voters for this option.