Treasurer Baumgartner Releases 2023 Year in Review Report Highlighting Steady Tax Collections, Robust Investment Returns, and Public Policy Advocacy
Spokane County, Wash. – The Spokane County Treasurer’s Office released its annual Year in Review for 2023 today. Highlights for last year include a steady property tax collection rate of over 98%, investment income of $40.48 million on the pooled funds of local governments, and several initiatives to provide better service and assistance to taxpayers.
The annual Year in Review includes overviews of the three major functions of the Treasurer’s Office: to collect, safeguard, and invest public funds on behalf of Spokane County and over eighty regional government entities. In 2023 the Treasurer’s Office was responsible for billing and collecting $818 million in property taxes and oversaw approximately $20 billion in public financial transactions.
“This Year in Review report is part of my effort to increase public awareness and understanding of the Treasurer’s Office,” said Michael Baumgartner, Treasurer of Spokane County. “Throughout the year we serve as a financial hub for the County, collecting taxes, dispersing those tax dollars out to local government entities, and managing an investment fund of public monies.”
This fund, the Spokane Public Investment Fund (SPIF), consists of the pooled monies of regional government entities. During 2023, the SPIF had an average daily balance of $1.6 billion and reached an historic highpoint in value of $1.9 billion in mid-November. Earnings on the fund’s investments amounted to $40.48 million in 2023 and were distributed back to the local public entities that participate in the fund.
“Our investment income supports local public services without raising taxes or fees,” said Treasurer Baumgartner.
The report also highlights the successful Local Direct Investment (LDI) program run by the Treasurer’s Office. The program provides financing for local government projects at competitive rates that produce savings for taxpayers. In 2023, the Treasurer and the Spokane International Airport reached an agreement providing $30 million in loans to support the Airport’s ongoing expansion project.
The report describes additional efforts made by the Treasurer’s Office to make paying taxes more convenient, and government more accessible to the public. Treasurer Baumgartner hosted several Town Halls to discuss issues with concerned taxpayers, and the office operated a remote property tax collection service at Spokane Valley City Hall, providing an option for in-person tax payment that offers greater convenience than visiting the County Courthouse for many taxpayers.
TREASURER'S OFFICE YEAR IN REVIEW: 2023 (PDF) - CLICK HERE!