Taxes Get to Know Skamania County

Skamania County's effective tax rate is the lowest in the state. Washington State's total tax burden is lower than the US average. Washington State's tax system features:

  • No Corporate Income Tax
  • No Unitary Tax
  • No Inventory Tax
  • No Personal Income Tax
  • No Personal Interest, Dividend or Capital Gains Tax
  • Manufacturer’s Sales / Use Tax Exemption on purchases of machinery and equipment used directly in manufacturing operation
  • A State and Local Property Tax with annual increases subject to statutory limitations
  • The Business and Occupation Tax - a low, simple-to-calculate tax based on gross receipts that does not penalize profitability or efficiency

Property Taxes

Washington State's property tax rates consist of levies that are imposed by various taxing districts as authorized by state law. Both regular and special levies are expressed in terms of dollars per $1,000 of assessed property value.

Washington State has a stable property tax system that has been in place for many years. Combined property taxes may not exceed one percent of the fair value. Real property (land, building, improvements) is assessed for property tax purposes in one of three ways.

  1. Sales or current market value
  2. Income or potential income if developed to highest and best use
  3. Cost or replacement value

Property Tax Levies

Washington State is one of seven in the entire country that does not have a personal income tax. It also has some of the lowest property taxes. Skamania County's levy rate for the year 2011 per $1,000 of assessed value varies from a low of 6.6 to 12.73 per $1,000 of assessed value.

Source: Skamania County Assessor

Unemployment Insurance

All employers in Washington State contribute to the State's Unemployment Compensation Fund. A variable rate of 0.49 - 6.0 percent is applied to the fund. Each company's rate is based upon historical turnover rates, industry type, and past unemployment payments drawn from the fund. A company with no employment history in Washington State is assessed the average industry rate.

Industrial Insurance

Employers are required by Washington State law to carry worker's compensation insurance for its employees. This coverage provides dual protection for the employer and employee. The employer gains immunity from lawsuits due to job-related injuries or illnesses, while the employee gains compensation should an injury or occupational illness occur.

The type of industry determines its occupational risk classification, which in turn establishes the premium rates. For large employers, the state offers a self-insurance program in which rates are negotiated on a case-by-case basis. Safety conscious employers may develop a cost-effective rate structure based upon experience.

Washington State City Business Taxes

The most common form of city business tax is gross receipts tax generally ranging from 0.05 to 0.2 percent. Other principal city business tax methods include business licenses, flat fees, fees based on the number of employees, and fees based on physical plant size.