To the Editor:

Please support the 3/10th’s of 1% Criminal Justice Tax, which will be on the August voting ballot. Kittitas County has benefited by this small sales tax used to help four law enforcement agencies including: Cle Elum Police Department, Ellensburg Police Department, Kittitas Police Department and the Kittitas County Sheriff’s Office. In addition, the sales tax helps the Kittitas County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, the Kittitas County Juvenile Court and the Kittitas County Clerk’s Office.

Kittitas County has seen growth in the number of residents since this tax was first approved by voters in 2007. With this growth, the number of people to protect and serve has increased. Kittitas County has also continued to be a destination getaway for extra-curricular activities or a stop on the way to other destinations. The calls for service increase, as the number of consumers increase. How we benefit from this tax is that when people stay to play or while passing through Kittitas County, their spending contributes to our protections.

This sales tax has helped fund additional patrol officers, a full-time School Resource Officer, anti-crime unit officers, an evidence clerk, courthouse security, deputy prosecutors in the criminal division and other specialized positions. Previous studies have shown the additional officers funded by this tax, account for handling up to one third of the response to calls for service.

Kittitas County residents benefit from the additional positions and training funded by this sales tax. I have been in law enforcement for 27 years and request your continued support of this ballot measure this August. Our wonderful county benefits greatly by this small sales tax.

Bart Olson



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