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City reviews budget

In light of the economy, the city of Arlington has some tough choices to make on its 2009 budget. They reviewed the first draft of the budget at the Oct. 13 workshop.

“This is the worst revenue picture in the last 10 years,” said City Administrator Allen Johnson.

“Sales tax is one of our major revenue sources and accounts for 31 percent of the city’s general fund budget.”

He said that Arlington’s portion of the state sales tax had been steadily increasing since 1999.

However, due to the slow down in construction and the economy in general, 2008 revenue is projected to be $475,000 less than the 2007 actual.

“Real estate excise taxes have decreased by 50 percent in 2008,” Johnson said.

The 2009 projections include sales tax on a new wastewater treatment plan, airport office expansion and the new hospital.

“These revenues fund major capital improvements,” he added.

Arlington has used these revenues to repay debt for the North Olympic Avenue project and the new police station as well as parks projects.

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