In 2010 the voters of Clallam County approved an increase in the Library’s property tax levy rate, from 33 cents per $1,000 of assessed valuation to 50 cents per $1,000, to take effect in 2011. The assessed valuation of property in Clallam County in 2011 was just under $8 billion, so this means NOLS collected approximately $4 million in property taxes that year. In 2012 property values decreased to about $7.5 billion. Therefore, the Library collected $3,750,000 in 2012. State law allows library districts to collect up to 101% more than what was collected the previous year, provided there is a financial need, and as long as they don’t exceed the statutory limit of 50 cents per $1,000.

Here are a couple of examples to illustrate Washington’s complicated system for funding libraries and other junior taxing districts. Let’s say the Library’s current levy rate had been 45 cents per $1,000 in 2011. That means the Library would have collected $3.6 million in 2011. In 2012, in accordance with state law, the Library would be eligible to receive up to 101% of that $3.6 million, or $3,636,000, despite the fact that property values went down from 2011 to 2012. In order to collect that $3,636,000, the Library’s rate (i.e. the multiplier) would have been adjusted to 48.5 cents per $1,000. Now let’s apply this “what if” scenario to 2012’s actual numbers. The Library’s levy rate was 50 cents per $1,000 in 2011, and with a County-wide assessed valuation of $8 billion, NOLS collected $4 million in 2011. The assessed valuation of Clallam County was $7.5 billion in 2012. NOLS would be entitled to $4,040,000 in 2012, but the rate (i.e. the multiplier) would need to be 53.8 cents per $1,000, which exceeds the statutory limit of 50 cents.

If you’d like more information about property taxes and NOLS, please contact the Library Director at or the Clallam County Assessor’s Office at 360.417.2400.