Diversion Issue History CRAB created by the Legislature in 1965 Standards of Good Practice formulated
Agency Focus Enhance professionalism within County Road Departments throughout the state Ensure compliance by County Road Departments with adopted statutes and regulations
Duties of the CRABoard RCW 36.78.070 Standards of Good Practice Reporting requirements Determine compliance Advise counties Administer grant programs
Organization Nine member board Elected officials and county engineers Distribution of membership Population Geographic Support staff Sixteen people
Standards of Good Practice Standards for “the administration of county roads and the efficient movement of people and goods over county roads”. RCW 36.78 WAC 136-12 through 136-70 Compliance verified through various reports and official county visits
Certificate of Good Practice Annual certification County Engineer and Legislative Authority must certify compliance with Standards of Good Practice Forwarded to State Treasurer for disbursement of gas tax revenue
Grant Programs Rural Arterial Program (RAP) — 1983 Reconstruction of county rural arterial system County Arterial Preservation Program (CAPP) — 1990 Preservation of rural and urban paved arterials
Road Levy (Property Tax) Authority: Over 33% of county road revenues are local property taxes Senior Levy Limits: $1.80/$1,000 for current expenses $2.25/$1,000 for roads Sum of levies cannot exceed $4.05/$1,000 Property Tax Levy – RCW 84.52.043 Road Fund Levy – RCW 36.82.040
Road Fund Diversion RCW 36.82.020: “Any funds accruing to… the county road fund… shall be expended for proper road purposes”. Funds not expended for “proper road purposes” are said to be diverted” (Small “d” variety).
Road Fund Diversion “Diversion” or Big “D” refers to road levy intended for road fund but not deposited because they are earmarked for other purposes. RCW 36.33.220: “… expend any portion of the county road property tax revenues for any service to be provided in the unincorporated area of the county…” RCW 36.82.040: “… revenues produced… shall be placed in a separate and identifiable account within the county’s current expense fund.”
Road Fund Diversion State Auditor’s Office suggested procedures for handling diverted road levy: 1. Funds diverted shown as estimated revenue 2. Separated from regular property taxes 3. Receipted directly into current expense fund. (Must use BARS number and revenue account for “diverted county road taxes”) 4. Develop accounting procedures that diverted funds were used to provide services in the unincorporated are of the county
Traffic Law Enforcement Very little guidance on limits or definitions of traffic law enforcement. Check RCW 36.79.140. Allowable “traffic law enforcement” items: 1. Oversize/overweight vehicle enforcement on county roads; 2. Traffic law enforcement (work zone speed limits, etc.) 3. Accident Investigations and associated legal work If provided non-traffic law enforcement services, make efforts to substantiate the percentage assignments. Good internal accounting procedures to insure supportable cost data.
Impacts of Diversion RCW 36.79.140: “Only those counties that during the preceding twelve months have spent all revenues collected for road purposes only for such purposes, including traffic law enforcement, … are eligible to receive funds from the rural arterial trust account…” Exempt counties < 8,000 and counties with voter approved action (RCW 84.55.050) Risk losing eligibility for RAP funds, regardless whether a county is using capital “D” diversion or small “d” diversion Loss of Certificate of Good practice and may jeopardize its gas tax revenues
Certification of Road Levy CRABoard responsible for county eligibility for Rural Arterial Program funds Counties submit a Road Levy Certification Form Rate and amount of the road levy Rate and amount for traffic law enforcement in accordance with RCW 36.33.220 Rate and amount for any other purposes or service to be provided in the unincorporated area of the county (WAC 136-150-021) See RCW 36.79.140 for details
Certification of Road Levy Expenditures Certification of Road Levy Expenditures form must be submitted if: “Diverting” funds for traffic law enforcement Wants to remain eligible for RAP funds No special accounting requirements for expenditures Signed by county sheriff, county auditor, and chair of the board of county commissioners or the county executive
WAC References WAC 136-150-020 Implementing the eligibility requirements WAX 136-150-021 Ascertaining the road levy WAC 136-150-022 Ascertaining the expenditures for traffic law enforcement