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Expert to present area-wide property tax effects of
Snohomish’s proposal to spur development

SNOHOMISH — At the Aug. 16 City Council meeting, the Snohomish County Assessor is expected to show their office’s calculations on the tax impacts for the broader area if council proceeds with a local development tax exemption for the Midtown District.
A vote won’t happen that evening, Council President Tom Merrill said.
The council would hold a new public hearing before taking a vote.
That hearing could be at the Sept. 20 council meeting, city planning director Glen Pickus said.
The Midtown District lies along north Avenue D.
The proposal waives property taxes for eight years for building multi-family residential if at least 10% of the units are rent-limited as housing that low-income people can afford, and adds four more years only if developers arrange to either have 25% or more of the units as affordable housing or if 20% of the units are affordable for “low-income” households, with 10% of those units price-restricted for “very low-income” housing.
By the numbers, a single person would have to earn no more than about $40,000 a year to be classified “very low-income” based on 50% of the median incomes across Snohomish County. That median is $115,000, federal data says. “Low-income” caps at about $63,000 a year for a single person, or 80% of the median or less.
The proposal also modifies the exemption in the Pilchuck District to conform to these standards for future development going forward.
Formally, it’s called a Multi-Family Tax Exemption.
It is a short-term waiver on all property taxes, such as the portions of school and fire district taxes on a property tax bill, not just city taxes. The exemption system shifts part of the developer’s exempted property tax bill to the rest of property owners through an increase.
The council meets at 6 p.m. in the Carnegie Building, 105 Cedar Ave., as well as on Zoom.
See snohomishwa.gov for Zoom login information.




Previous coverage:

Council awaits clearer figures on Midtown developer exemption

SNOHOMISH — The City Council has placed a time-out on a proposal to introduce a temporary property tax waiver for developers to build multimillion-dollar residential buildings in the Midtown District, the city’s zoning area along Avenue D.

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