Fate of a proposed sales tax hike to be decided in October

The money from the tax hike would fund at least two psychiatric nurse practitioners and one substance abuse specialist at the county level.

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WALLA WALLA - The fate of a proposed sales tax hike to boost mental health services won't be known until October, Walla Walla County commissioners decided today.

Commissioners voted to postpone action on the matter until their first meeting in October and to vote yes or no on the issue then.

Commissioners Perry Dozier, Gregg Loney and Greg Tompkins agreed the delay will allow them time to get a better idea of the 2012 budget picture. If enacted by commissioners in October, the tax increase would not take effect until the start of next year.

The proposed one-tenth of 1 percentage point increase would raise between $700,000 and $800,000 per year. The money would fund at least two psychiatric nurse practitioners and one substance abuse specialist at the county level.

Commissioners have been studying and taking comments on the proposal since it was brought forward earlier this year by county Human Services Director Daryl Daugs.

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