Overview of 2021 NEW Property Tax Levies

Voter-Approved Levies for Tax Year 2021

  1. State-Part 2 2018 - 2021
  2. San Juan Island Schools Levy
  3. Lopez Schools Levy
  4. Lopez Waste Disposal 

"The McCleary Case" Background

In 2007, a lawsuit was filed on behalf Matthew and Stephanie McCleary. The suit (known as the “McCleary Case”) alleged that the State of Washington failed to meet the state constitution "to make ample provision for the education of all children residing within its borders."  In 2012, Washington Supreme Court ruled that the State was not adequately funding basic education (K – 12). The Court ordered the State to fully fund basic education. 

The State legislature determined the best way to generate revenue to fully fund basic education was through the taxation of property. To this end, a new levy was created called “State Levy – Part 2”. The funds collected from State Levy - Part 2 goes to the state’s general fund. This money is distributed to school districts throughout the state.

The State legislature imposed an additional state property tax for common schools, costing $12,949,000,000 in the first ten years, for government spending.

In 2017, the voters in San Juan County, along with the State of Washington, agreed to MAINTAIN the tax increase in the advisory vote.

Tax YearLevy AmountLevy Rate
In 2018, the Legislature made changes to temporarily lower the levy rate for taxes payable in 2019. The lower levy rate did not continue for taxes payable in 2020 and 2021.

Tax Impact to Property Owners of San Juan County

2021 Tax Levy: $1.0187 per $1,000 of assessed value

Example: If your property is assessed at $400,000 then the tax amount for State Levy - Part 2 will be $407.50

Tax Code Areas (TCA) Impacted: All tax code areas are impacted.

Additional Information

How will this increased rate affect property tax for different groups who already qualify for a tax exemption? 

  • Senior citizens and disabled persons (RCW 84.36.381) – not affected
  • Nonprofit organizations (RCW 84.36) – not affected
  • Exempt properties (RCW 84.36) – not affected
  • Farm and machinery equipment (RCW 84.36.630) – not affected

Additional Information:

Funding Education

State School Levy Property Tax Tip Sheet

Final Bill Report EHB 2242

The takeaway…Washington State property owners will pay more in property taxes to fully fund basic K-12 education.

The Assessor and Treasurer Offices cannot change the law.

To discuss “what can be done about this”, contact your District 40 Legislators: