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Council considers Lodging Tax grants


December 6, 2017 | View PDF

Arlington City Council faced a short agenda this Monday, Dec. 4.

After little discussion and no complaints from the public at last week’s workshop meeting, council was expected to approve Lodging Tax distributions for 2018.

Finance Director Kristin Garcia reviewed the distributions as recommended by the Lodging Tax Advisory Committee (LTAC).

A total of 21 lodging tax grant applications were received with requests totaling $187,395. The city budgeted $170,000 for 2018 LTAC grant awards.

All applicants were recommended for funding, although some requests were not fully funded. The Stillaguamish Genealogical Society request for $42,600 was approved for $35,400 and those projects that were scored 60 or less by the committee were funded less 10 percent, including Arlington Arts Council’s Legend of the Blues, which will receive $10,692 out of $11,900, Vision for a Cure’s Brewfest $2,250 out of $2,500, Stillaguamish Valley Pioneer Association $3,803 out of $4,225, the city of Arlington’s kiosk renovation $1,485 out of $1,500, and the Downtown Arlington Business Association’s brochure $4,950 out of $5,500.

Fully funded projects include $26,000 for the Arlington Fly-In, and five requests from the Arlington-Smokey Point Chamber of Commerce, including $7,430 for advertising in the Cascade Loop magazine, $19,800 for the Visitor Information Center, $6,100 for the Centennial Sk8 Fest, $3,000 for a quilt trail project, and $5,000 for the Fourth of July Grand Parade.

DABA withdrew its request for $7,750 for the Viking Fest and will be funded in full with $5,000 for Hometown Holidays, $3,500 for the Arlington Street Fair and $6,500 for their Show-n-Shine Car Show.

The city of Arlington was recommended for approval for $12,400 for a stage in Legion Park, to pay $590 for Art Walk signs in I-5 and SR 530, $5,200 for the Eagle Festival and $7,900 for summertime entertainment.

Also this week, council was expected to approve proposed changes in utility rates and the billing strategy for multi-family and commercial accounts.

Public Works Director Jim Kelly proposed changing the utility rate structure, after council discussed the idea in July. In 2015 and 2016, Public Works conducted a utility billing analysis to determine the cost of service to provide water and wastewater services to three classes of customers: single family residential (SFR), multi-family residential (MFR), and commercial entities (COM).

The goal of the analysis was to assure equity to all of Arlington’s utility customers, Kelly said in documents.

Based on the analysis, staff is proposing to maintain the current 2017 rates for 2018 for all customer classes. Staff is also proposing to modify the water and sewer billing structure for multi-family residential services. The proposed modification will charge for all metered water consumption and eliminate the base charge that is currently charged to apartment units.


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