News and HOT TOPICS


Emergency Assistance Program grant applications

Residents in Columbia County, Dodge County, Jefferson County, Ozaukee County, Sauk County and Washington County whose homes were damaged by the August 27, 2018 to September 1, 2018 destructive storms and flooding may now apply for recovery funds through the Southern Housing Region Emergency Assistance Program.

These counties were recently awarded approximately $800,000 in Community Development Block Grant-Emergency Assistance Program funding to provide aid to low-to-moderate-income households affected by the flooding.

Funds are granted to applicants and do not need to be paid back. Applicants may only receive Emergency Assistance Program funding once, however, and they will not qualify for the program again if their homes are damaged by future flooding.

Funds may be used to reimburse eligible applicants for work already completed and funds are available for those who have work that needs to be done. Applicants' homes will be visited to see that repairs have been made or that there is still flood-related damage in need of repair.

Homeowners and landlords who rent to low-to-moderate-income families may apply.

For more information about the program or income requirements, please contact Sue Koehn at 800-552-6330 or skoehn@msa-ps.com.


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Energy Assistance Program

If you have a utility bill and need financial assistance, check out our program guidelines!


Washington County Releases Budget Summary

Washington County published the 2019 Budget-in-Brief. The budget-in-brief is a ten-page summary which gives a broad condensation of the over-200 page budget. Washington County's budget is driven by the mission, values, and strategic priorities previously adopted by the county board. The BIB presents how the county allocates resources, how resources are spent, and the County's top budget priorities. The BIB also highlights county debt trends and clarifies the current county tax rate and tax bill.

"Exhibiting a high degree of transparency is critical to building trust for our taxpayers," said Margaret Hamers, Finance Director. "This document is essentially a summary of our pocketbook and spending decisions."

In 2019, the County's top budget priorities include reducing the tax rate, reducing the budget deficit, initiating the compensation plan study and continuing sustainability plans. Budget highlights included:

The County's property tax rate declined from 2.4901 in 2018 to 2.3930 in 2019 - the lowest county tax rate in over a century.

The 2019 planned budget deficit level of $600,000 represents the lowest level in two decades, and the lowest since the strategy was introduced in the late 1990's.

The County included dollars to study the County's pay plan and help fund anticipated plan modifications to invest in its human resources and attract and retain a workforce dedicated to service excellence.

As a lower priority for Washington County, parks was asked to further reduce reliance on the property tax levy by $150,000. This budget reflects an increase in revenues of $150,000 for parks.

This budget "doubles down" on investment in the County's Economic Development Strategy. It funds the County's Revolving Loan Fund programs to the tune of an additional $2 million. Over time, the result will be an astonishing historic $18.5 million dollar evergreen fund for economic development. The budget begins funding of the County's new 2050 Transportation Network Sustainability Plan. The 2019 Budget includes funding for the first year of principal and interest payments on debt issued as part of the plan.

The County's debt per capita is $63 - the lowest of surrounding counties based on 2017 financial statements. Debt increased in this budget for planned road construction projects without raising expenses

Budget in Brief
2019 Budget Book


Washington County Officials Launch New Logo, Mission and Vision

New branding comes after months of strategic process

On February 15, Washington County officials unveiled a new mission, vision, values, logo, slogan and color scheme at the Old Courthouse. The announcement merged the history of the county with the new branding. The County hired EPIC Creative of West Bend to develop the new brand identity and surveyed the community on logo and tagline options late last year.

First, the mission, vision, and values were developed through an in-depth strategic branding process. The logo itself includes a picturesque Washington County horizon with the sun representing a new, prosperous age for our region. The clean line work symbolizes the commitment to business and community as the County simultaneously developed new values outlining these commitments. Most will recognize the iconic, rolling Kettle Moraine hills within the brand.

According to EPIC Creative, the design elements in the new logo are directed at businesses, residents, and visitors, which is why the design was based on feedback throughout the strategic branding process.

The slogan, "Discover. Connect. Prosper." strives to tie the community together by discovering our county's natural beauty and rich heritage, connecting with each other, and prospering together with a strong business and education climate.

The elements feature:
Structure, opportunity and heritage;
an outside rectangle representing the structure, security and heritage we're built on;
a sun representing opportunity and a bright future; a green path that point forward; and
Rolling hills and trees showcasing the nature and Kettle Moraine landscape of Washington County.

"It's important to have an identity, it's important to show that identity to the public we represent," said Don Kriefall, County Board Chair. "Even though we're not the biggest county in Wisconsin, we're the most innovative county in Wisconsin."





Heritage Trails Lake Development Project

Find information on the County's Heritage Trails Lake Development Project