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Bellevue moves forward with new parks levy

A $40.5 million parks levy request will go before the Bellevue City Council on Monday, July 21, with councilmembers indicating they will put the measure on the Nov. 4 general election ballot.

The measure also would include $660,000 in annual maintenance funding. The park levy would be paid over 20 years.

The levy would include funds to acquire and preserve additional natural areas and open space throughout Bellevue. The measure also would fund the following: park improvements for Downtown Park and Lewis Creek Park; trail improvements in Coal Creek Park; an upgrade to synthetic turf for Wilburton and Newport Hills soccer fields; expansion of Crossroads Community Center; neighborhood parks in Bridle Trails and along the West lake Sammamish Parkway; redevelopment of Surrey Downs Park; and development of a new 27-acre community park in the Eastgate area along 156th Avenue Southeast.

The ongoing maintenance funding would ensure that new parks are maintained to Bellevue standards, city officials say.

The tax rate for the new measure is less than the average tax rate associated with the expiring 1988 bonds, which are expiring this year. The bonds expiring this year had an average property tax rate of 17 cents per $1,000 of assessed value; the new measure would have a first year property tax impact of 12 cents per $1,000 of assessed value, or $71 per year for a typical home in Bellevue.

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