UPDATE | County mistake nets city almost $1 million in misplaced taxes

Due to miscalculations at the Kitsap County Treasurer’s Office, the city of Bainbridge Island will soon get a check for nearly $1 million.

The city was notified last week that the county had miscalculated Bainbridge’s real estate excise tax revenue, resulting in $978,963.14 owed to Bainbridge Island.

City Manager Doug Schulze told the Bainbridge Island City Council Monday that the city has been reporting discrepancies to the county since early this year.

The downward trend in 2014 tax revenues did not match up with Bainbridge’s reviving economy and improvements in housing sales on Bainbridge, Schulze said.

“We were told a number of times that there were no errors, everything was OK,” Schulze explained.

“Well, last week we learned that things weren’t OK,” he said.

In an email sent to the city, Kitsap County Treasurer Meredith Green said that due to a programming error, the county not only owed Bainbridge, but also owed the city of Poulsbo more than $40,000 and the city of Bremerton nearly $85,000.

About $218,000 of the total of the three city’s missing revenues was mistakenly distributed to the city of Port Orchard. The remaining $896,000 was transferred to Kitsap County.

“We take our responsibilities for accurately processing transactions very seriously and apologize that we did not detect this situation earlier,” Green wrote in the email to Bainbridge officials.

Green added that reports will be closely monitored in the future, and due to recent programming changes, the treasurer’s office does not anticipate any more errors to occur.

While the debt is expected to be balanced as an adjustment to the July revenues, Schulze said that the city has requested additional reports from the county to conduct its own analysis in the meantime.

The city’s assessment will determine whether the correct amount is paid.


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