Seattle Mayor Pitches $55M Tax Measure For Homeless Services

SEATTLE (AP) – Seattle Mayor Ed Murray is pitching a property tax ballot measure to raise $55 million a year to pay for increased homeless services.

Murray said in his state of the city address Tuesday that the city needs to double its spending on homelessness.

He hopes to quality a measure for the August ballot that would hike taxes on residential and commercial properties to pay for more mental health and addiction treatment and housing.

Murray will also activate the city’s emergency operations center for as long as needed to respond to people living on the streets. The center is typically only used during severe storms, natural disasters or massive city events.

The city says it will apply the coordination and communication tools of the emergency operations center to address homelessness in the city.

Murray declared a statement of emergency in late 2015 as the number of people living outside spiked.

 

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press.

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