April 2019 special election preliminary results

LWSD levy passing; Fall City fire merger and hospital bond coming up short.

  • Wednesday, April 24, 2019 12:51pm
  • News

Lake Washington School District appeared to garner the only support from voters during a preliminary count of special election ballots on Tuesday, April 23.

Voters on the Eastside cast their ballots for multiple issues, depending on where the voter lives — a fire district merger was on ballots in the Valley, a levy was on tap for Lake Washington School District voters, and Hospital District 2 floated a potential bond.

All results are preliminary and could change as additional ballots are received through the mail. No results are final until the election is certified on May 3.

Valley fire merger

Initial results show voters rejecting a fire district merger, with 54.7 percent of voters rejecting proposition 1.

The merger between Fire District 27, home of Fall City Fire Department, and Eastside Fire and Rescue’s Fire District 10 (covering much of the Valley, along with Issaquah and Sammamish) proposed a new tax structure and changes in operations and staffing.

Proponents noted that equipment and maintenance costs would be lessened through a merger due to shared resources. Opponents worried about a loss of local control and a loss of past capital investments, as well as a reduction in service (proponents disagreed with those concerns).

The issue was hotly debated leading up to the election.

LWSD levy

Voters looked favorably on the Lake Washington School District, with preliminary ballots showing nearly 54 percent of ballots voting “Yes” for the proposed levy.

Lake Washington School District (LWSD) overlaps many Eastside communities, including Kirkland, Redmond, Woodinville and Sammamish.

The proposition authorizes a six-year levy totaling $120 million or $20 million per year for six years. The 2019 levy maintains the current tax rate with no rate increase.

Over the past 10 years, the district has grown by 6,218 students, a 26 percent growth. As of October 2018, nearly 30,000 students were enrolled in LWSD.

An additional 2,000 students are projected to enroll in the district by 2022.

The capital projects levy hopes to address the growth by funding the construction of permanent classroom additions at Lake Washington High School (20 classrooms), Rachel Carson Elementary School (four classrooms), Benjamin Franklin Elementary School (eight classrooms), Rose Hill Elementary School (eight classrooms) and Mark Twain Elementary school (four classrooms).

The classroom additions will add capacity for 1,052 students.

The levy also will provide an additional auxiliary gymnasium and commons space at LWHS, and additional core facilities at Rachel Carson, Ben Franklin, Rose Hill and Mark Twain elementary schools.

The final part of the levy will provide exterior security cameras at elementary schools, as well as entrance modifications to entrances of LWHS, Eastlake High School and Redmond High School.

Hospital District 2

While voters overall looked favorably on a potential bond for Hospital District 2, preliminary tallies were coming up short. The measure required a supermajority — more than 60 percent approval — to pass. On election night, the bond had only 57.38 percent approval.

A little more than 47,000 ballots were counted (about 25.8 percent of registered voters in the district).

Marketed as the “EverHealthy” campaign, Hospital District 2 was requesting voter approval for a $345 million, 20-year bond to fund critical upgrades.

The upgrades needed for EvergreenHealth’s Kirkland medical center are outlined in the health system’s 10-year Master Facilities Plan (MFP).

If the ballot measure is passed when additional ballots are counted, property owners in the hospital district will pay $0.18 per $1,000 of assessed home value per year over 20 years to pay for upgrades to the medical center’s Critical Care Unit (CCU), extensive seismic upgrades to the original hospital, modernize the Family Maternity Center (FMC) and update aging systems.

Hospital District 2 spans several Eastside communities, as far south as Sammamish, north to Snohomish County, as far west as Kenmore, and into the Snoqualmie Valley, reaching east of Duvall. The service area extends beyond the district boundaries.

More in News

King County jail lost water 16 times since 2018

The building has been plagued with water failures stemming from Aquatherm pipes.

Mercer Island seniors sing from their songbooks in the Fellowship Hall at Covenant Living at the Shores on July 17. Madeline Coats/staff photo
A monthly sing-a-long program uses music to support patients with memory loss

Music Mends Minds places emphasis on music therapy as a way to delay neurodegenerative dementia.

Low Income Housing Institute’s 57-unit August Wilson Place apartments in downtown Bellevue includes affordable housing units for households at 30, 50 and 60 percent of the area median income. Photo courtesy of Low Income Housing Institute
Economic growth continues for King County

Warning signs on horizon as housing and rent prices cool down compared to previous years.

From left, John Rivera-Dirks, Tam Dinh and Linhui Hao are all vying for an open school board seat in the Mercer Island School District.
Three candidates aim to fill an open seat on the Mercer Island school board

Tam Dinh, John Rivera-Dirks and Linhui Hao compete for Mercer Island School District Position 5.

Man drowns Sunday at Luther Burbank Park

Bystanders attempted to help.

King County Correctional Facility is located at 500 5th Ave., Seattle. File photo
King County jail’s leaky pipes have national implications

Lawsuit filed in King County Superior Court alleges Aquatherm has been selling faulty pipes.

A full room of Mercer Island residents questioned candidates running for City Council Pos. 7 and School Board Pos. 5. Madeline Coats/staff photo
Candidates for council and school board attended forum

The King County Primary Election is on Aug. 6.

Most Read