BELLINGHAM, Wash. -

Property taxes in Whatcom County will be increasing for the first time since 1997.

The Bellingham Herald reports that the Whatcom County Council on Tuesday approved a tax increase of 1 percent over the next two years.

The increase means the owner of a $300,000 home will pay $3 more over this year's property tax.

It will add $285,313 to the county's general fund next year.

The additional funding will go to the county's general fund.

State law allows counties to increase overall property tax revenue by 1 percent each year.