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Library issue fails

Sno-Isle libraries will not get the $2.4 million for books they had hoped for this year.

In a special election Tuesday, voters in Island and Snohomish counties said "no" to a property tax increase that would have increased the library district's tax millage from 44 cents per $1,000 of property value to 50 cents.

The issue did came closer to passing in Island County than in Snohomish County. Of voters who cast their ballots either by mail or on computerized voting machines at the polls, 54.4 percent voted to approve the tax increase. The total number of "yes" voters on the measure was 6,944.

However, a much larger turnout in Snohomish County overwhelmed the Island County result. Voters in that county gave an overall "no" to the measure, with 34,705, or 52.9 percent voting against it. Combined numbers from the two counties show a 30,737 voters approving of the measure and 40,422 against it.

Had the measure been approved, the additional revenue generated would have gone to maintain current programs. Sno-Isle officials stated prior to the election that without the money, some programs might have to be cut at its libraries.

The election cost the library district approximately $500,000 to run, an amount Sno-Isle planned to glean from a levy increase.

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