Let the people choose: $20 car tab put on survey

YAKIMA, Wash. -- You will have a chance to weigh on a $20 car tab fee in Yakima. It just won't be on the ballot. Yakima City Council wants you to fill out a survey instead. Action News learned money was behind the decision.

Let the people choose. That's City Council's latest decision on a $20 car tab fee. It's not much different from the previous decisions. However, members feel they are moving in the right direction.

"It's been delayed and I get just as frustrated as anybody else, but I'd rather take our time and do it right," said Yakima Mayor Micah Cawley.

Council wants to do it right at the right price. Instead of having citizens vote on it in November, the council is putting it in a survey for you to answer.

"Here's an opportunity to get more information before we spend $40,000 to $80,000 and get a no vote," said Councilman Dave Ettl.

That's what it would cost to put the issue on the ballot. Answering the question in a city survey will cost $25,000.

Mayor Micah Cawley said the survey is in the new city manager's contract.

"What he wants to know, and it's frankly long overdue in our community is what do the people think about where we're at," he said. "Are we giving them the services that they want?"

3,000 surveys will go out in the mail by the end of the month. It will ask you about housing, education, streets and a variety of other topics. O'Rourke will use the answers to set goals for Yakima on what could be a new course for the city. The challenge will be meeting them.

Results from the survey won't be ready until September. Don't expect to see any real changes from the answers until next year.