[Guest Opinion Post by Robert Angrisano, Firefighter/EMT. Views expressed are those of the author, not the Living Snoqualmie website. You may submit letters to the editor or opinion posts to firstname.lastname@example.org]
To better serve the Snoqualmie Valley Communities, on April 25, homeowners in Snoqualmie Valley Hospital (SVH) District 4 will be asking votes, for the first time since 2008, to vote for a levy lid lift increase from 24.8 cents per thousand of assessed property value to 70 cents per thousand.
Before we look at the future, let’s look at the significant accomplishments SVH District 4 has made over the last 24 months. District accomplishments included the following:
- Provided the community with thousands of COVID-19 tests and vaccinations.
- Created negative pressure hospital rooms to care for COVID-infected patients.
- Significantly increased the quality of Emergency Room care by contracting Overlake ER doctors to staff the ER.
- Hired a full-time Pediatrician.
- Upgraded and expanded the Cardiac Care department with new stress echo testing equipment.
- Upgraded the laboratory with new equipment and decreased turnaround times.
- Opened a new Urgent Care on Snoqualmie Ridge.
- Opened a new Medical Aesthetics unit in the primary care department.
- Tripled the capacity of the Behavioral Health Providers.
Looking ahead, the passage of the Levy Lid increase will provide the funding needed to build on those accomplishments, plus add additional services and capacity. The levy will provide the following:
- Expand the emergency department to accommodate more patients.
- Expand the laboratory and radiology services to include the latest CT and MRI scanner technology.
- Expand its women’s health services by adding mammography to its radiology department.
- Expand services to outlining areas.
- Expand existing departments to better serve the growth in the community.
- Assure long-term financial stability in the face of escalating healthcare costs.
- Expansion of women’s health services by adding mammography in the Radiation Department
When this levy passes, SVH will be able to create a new tax credit policy that will allow district taxpayers a tax credit on 100% of the hospital levy tax paid each year toward any SVH services. For example, suppose a homeowner pays $400 for the Hospital District #4 levy on their King County property tax bill and uses SVH services. In that case, they can use that entire $400 as a credit toward their balance owed for any services anywhere in the SVH network.
For more information and a comprehensive question-and-answer section, please visit https://snoqualmiehospital.org/levy2023/
According to King County Elections (206 296-8683), there will be a voter’s pamphlet included with your ballot, which arrives in the mail approximately three weeks prior to the April 25 special election.