Snow fell heavily on county budget

In areas presumably other than milk and bread, February’s uncharacteristically rough weather seems to have had an impact on sales tax revenue.

Island County Budget Manager Doug Martin told county commissioners last week that sales tax revenue still increased slightly, but with a lower net increase compared to last year. The numbers represent February sales, which led him and commissioners to believe Whidbey’s Snowmaggedon had made its mark.

“Once they cleaned out the grocery store, they stayed home,” said Commissioner Helen Price Johnson at the meeting.

Martin said in an interview he’s been tracking economic predictions and although there’s an estimated plateauing of growth on the horizon, he sees no cause for concern.

The month’s sales brought in almost $526,100, and last year the county received approximately $513,000. Revenue from construction dipped below 2018’s revenues, but Martin said he expects that number to be especially dependent on mellowing weather.

At the request of Commissioner Janet St. Clair, Martin also reported the total cost of snow removal for the year. Island County Public Works spent $477,073 in salaries and benefits and supplies for the service, which exceeded the department’s snow budget by $90,561. Approximately $55,000 was used for materials such as salt and sand for the roads.

Pubic Works Director Bill Oakes said the extra costs were absorbed in his maintenance budget, however there might need to be more adjustments made if another storm hits before the start of the new year.

Oakes said he’s talked to Martin about increasing the snow budget for 2020, just in case.

More in News

Eagles Aeries donates $20,600 to Whidbey nonprofits

In the tradition of “People Helping People,” the official motto of the… Continue reading

HUB searches for new board member

A Langley nonprofit organization that has been supporting kids for over 30… Continue reading

Island Beach Access meeting set for Feb. 27

Interested in learning more about beach access rights? Island Beach Access will… Continue reading

Johnson seeking third term as county commissioner

Island County Commissioner Jill Johnson is seeking a third term this fall.… Continue reading

Suspect in rape undergoes competency evaluation

A man living in an Oak Harbor assisted living facility accused of… Continue reading

Man seriously injured in one-car crash Wednesday

A Bellingham man was seriously injured in a single car crash Wednesday… Continue reading

Mystery Weekend parading into Langley next weekend

Langley is a quaint little city where crime seems to sleep most… Continue reading

WhidbeyHealth in top 50 for cardiovascular health

WhidbeyHealth was recently chosen as one of 50 hospitals to participate in… Continue reading

Truck theft leads to odd chase

A deputy was able to return a stolen truck to a Freeland… Continue reading

Most Read