What is the User Tax? Proceeds from this tax go directly into the City's general fund to off-set property tax. Some of the services included in the general fund which receive funding from this tax are: Police, Fire, Planning, Building and Senior Programs. Even with the user tax the city's electric rate is very competitive with the other provider in the area (PP&L). It should be noted the user tax is applied to the electric bill but is not applied to the new surcharge on energy use (BPA's wholesale rate).
Don't my property taxes cover the cost of city services? Property taxes pay for about 18% of the general fund. The remaining general fund revenues come from the user tax, franchise fees, hotel/motel taxes and other miscellaneous sources. They all help to diversify the funding necessary for the General Fund, minimizing our reliance on property taxes alone. As an example, the user tax enables the City to reduce the overall property tax rate by approximately $1.53 per $1,000 in valuation.