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Metro predicts $185M COVID-19 sales tax hit

With ridership down about 75%, King County Metro provided a glimpse of economic pain to come from a key source of revenue: sales tax.

Tuesday, Metro said is prepared for a $185 million hit to its sales tax funding for 2020, including a $185 million loss projected for 2020, KIRO reports.

$243 million coming in federal aid can help Metro bridge any shortfalls to pay for operations but that money can’t be deployed for other costs. Between now and 2022, Metro says the sales tax gap could reach $397 million.

The economic challenge fits into a grid of problems predicted for local governments as the COVID-19 crisis has sickened thousands and brought crippling restrictions to slow the spread of the virus.

The City of Seattle is projecting a $200 million to $300 million in its budget as its prepares for a range of possible recoveries including a rapid turnaround or a slow, painful climb from record joblessness and plunging tax revenue.

King County Metro, meanwhile, continues to serve about 100,000 riders a day for essential trips, officials say.

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One thought on “Metro predicts $185M COVID-19 sales tax hit

  1. Gosh, if only there was a way to tax people who make billions of dollars each year instead of relying on sales taxes! That sure would help, wouldn’t it. They could call it… “income tax”. Wild!

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