Respect, Protection & Safety for All In Our Community

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Funding Requirements

“It all starts with 911.”

- Fire Chief Bryan Brice, City of Mount Vernon

Thank you for taking time to learn about needed public safety improvements to Skagit County’s 911 system.  The agency responds to an average of 230,000 calls a year for fire, emergency medical service, law enforcement, and disaster agencies in Skagit County, covering 1,731 miles and 132,000 residents.

Skagit 911 is funded by a one-tenth of one percent sales tax, a 911 tax on phone bills, and agency fees.  It operates under a balanced budget with limited reserves for emergencies and has passed all its independent audits by the state.

Skagit 911 recently completed a critical assessment and capital improvement plan that identifies public safety improvement our system requires. For example, some of the technology and equipment is outdated.  There is no radio coverage in some parts of the county, and 911 needs added capacity to serve first responders. All critical systems require upgrades to protect against cybersecurity attacks.

The Skagit 911 Board of Directors is considering a one-tenth of one percent sales tax increase to fund these public safety improvements.  Several counties in Washington have passed the same measure to fund critical infrastructure needs, including Snohomish, Cowlitz, Kitsap, Thurston and Whitman Counties.

Sales tax in Skagit County would still be lower than Snohomish County, and comparable to Whatcom County.  Sales tax funding is a fair way to fund the 911 system because it also applies to retail visitors from Canada and neighboring counties.  The measure could be on the November 8, 2022 General Election ballot.  This will be a public process, and we invite you to take part.

- Skagit 911's Team

Page updated: 04/28/2022