Posted By RichC on February 18, 2010
I’ve been mostly supportive and relatively pleased with the education my kids have received in our local public schools, but from my perspective it has come at a cost, since my property taxes are steep. My desire for ‘lower-taxes’ aside, the timing of a new school levy and property tax increases, with automatic increase again in 2012 and hints of yet another “anticipated” additional request in 2014 is absurd (article snippet below).
Incremental levies — “spread the load,” board members said Wednesday — using one vote by taxpayers to support two millage rates. In this case, if approved, the incremental levy would continue at the 6.9-mill level until 2012, then automatically increase by 4.9 mills from 2012 to 2014.
If approved, the levy would cost an additional $211 per year per $100,000 in home value from 2010 to 2012, then $361 — a $150 increase — per year per $100,000 in home value from 2012 to 2014. District finance officials said Monday they anticipate heading back to voters for another operating levy in 2014 or 2015.
With an economy sputtering and creating paycheck reductions for many residents along with some facing unemployment and mounting bills, it is not a good time for schools to be asking for more money. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t discount that our schools have announced cuts in spending and they have already eliminated positions, programs, some bus services and assistant this-and-that positions, but there comes a time when school employees across the board need to talk pay and benefit cuts just as in the private sector when business is in recession. Come back when we see the efficiencies of using our expensive facilities year around and school employees working without the excessive vacation, holiday and sick time … if and when that happens, then come to us with a school levy.