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News about the legal Washington State industry & public concerns.

East-Side Towns Pine for Washington Liquor Revenue

Paige Browning
Spokane Public Radio

Spokane and nearby towns want their share of the state’s liquor and marijuana revenue. Monday, east-side mayors announced they are sending their request to lawmakers this week. When liquor sales went private in Washington, cities still received liquor tax revenue. But in 2012 lawmakers voted to keep most of the liquor tax revenue in the state’s budget. 

Spokane Mayor David Condon says cities need it more. He says the state has redirected more than $200 million in liquor revenue that originally was meant for cities.

Condon: “We have worked hard to make Spokane safer, and that money is needed to help us replace aging fire equipment and hire additional police officers."

Small town mayor Nan Konishi of Rosalia says without the extra money, they had to shut down their police force.

Konishi: “$60,000 is what it would cost us to have a full time Marshall that we had in the past, and we just simply don’t have that money any more.”

Rosalia now depends on sheriff’s deputies to patrol the 550 person town.

The northeast Washington mayors will also request that marijuana tax revenue is either directed to cities or more specifically towards public safety.

Copyright 2015 Spokane Public Radio

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