Deadline nears for registering to vote in February Special Election

Bainbridge Island residents who aren’t registered to vote but would like to cast a ballot for the Feb. 14 Special Election still have time to register before Election Day.

But not much time.

According to the Washington Secretary of State’s Elections Division, Monday, Jan. 16 is the last day to register online, or for voters to make online updates to their names or addresses.

But because Jan. 16 is the Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday — and the U.S. Postal Service isn’t delivering mail that day — state elections officials are urging county elections offices to accept mail-in registrations or updates postmarked Jan. 17.

To register online or to print out a voter registration form, visit https://www.sos.wa.gov/elections/register.aspx.

Anyone who is not currently a registered voter in Washington has until Monday, Feb. 6 to register in person at their county elections office.

For the Feb. 14 Special Election, counties will mail ballots to military and overseas voters on or before Jan. 15, with the remaining ballots being sent to all other voters by Jan. 27.

Thirty-four of the state’s 39 counties have at least one district with a measure appearing on the February Special Election ballot. Of the 103 ballot measures throughout the state for the February election, 79 are for school levies. The others cover city, fire, park, library, hospital and cemetery measures.

Bainbridge voters will decide the fate of two proposed tax measures to fund local schools.

Proposition 1. is an extension of the school district’s educational program and operations levy. The new levy, which will provide funding for staffing, transportation, instructional programs, student activities and other areas, will replace the levy approved by voters in 2014.

The four-year levy will start in 2018 and collect $10.4 million, rising to $11 million in 2021.

The levy will cost the owner of a $400,000 home approximately $600 in property taxes in 2018, rising to $616 by 2021. (The assessment is $1.50 per $1,000 of assessed property value in 2018, rising to $1.54 per $1,000 of assessed value in 2021.)

Proposition 2 is a request for renewal of the district’s technology levy.

The four-year tech levy will raise $2.2 million each year from 2018 through 2021.

The levy will cost property owners 32 cents per $1,000 of assessed value in 2018, and will drop to 31 cents per $1,000 of assessed property value in 2019 through 2021. It will cost the owner of a $400,000 home approximately $128 in its first three years.

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