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King County to appeal court ruling on youth jail funding

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SEATTLE — King County officials say they will appeal a ruling by an appeals court that found voters were provided flawed language on the funding mechanism when they approved a ballot measure to build a new youth jail and courthouse in Seattle.

Our news partner The Seattle Times reported Tuesday the county will appeal to the state Supreme Court.

The appeals court, reversing Pierce County Superior Court, found “Prop. 1’s ballot title did not expressly authorize the County to levy property taxes based on the increased base tax amount in the first year of the levy.”

A lawyer for opponents of the youth complex, Knoll Lowney, called the ruling a “likely death blow” to the project, while Anthony Wright, director of the county’s Facilities Management Division, called it a “technical ruling regarding the method for levy collection.”

County voters in 2012 approved a $210 million levy to pay for a replacement for the existing juvenile-justice complex.

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