Voters are passing Proposition No. 1, a levy increase sought by Skagit County Cemetery District 3 on Guemes Island.

The measure is passing with 242 yes votes (68.3%) to 112 no votes (31.64%).

The levy will support, maintain and expand operations at Edens Cemetery, which was established in about 1904.

Proposition No. 1 would increase the levy from 1.5 cents to 4 cents per $1,000 in assessed property value in the district.

According to the district, the increase would mean the cost for the owner of a $500,000 home would go from $7.50 to $20. The amount available to the district per year would go from an estimated $5,986 annually to $15,903.

The levy would fund existing operations as well as a tree screen between the cemetery and the adjacent fire station, a scattering garden for ashes, a columbarium (building with niches for funeral urns to be stored), reclamation of portions of the cemetery for future use and an upgrade in technology.

The increased funding would also go toward making the cemetery more conducive to visitors.

— Reporter Vince Richardson: 360-416-2181, vrichardson@skagitpublishing.com, Twitter:@goskagit, Facebook.com/VinceReports/

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