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Growing School Population Results in Emergency Levy Funding

At the last Garden Valley School District Board meeting an Emergency Levy of $127, 843 was passed due to a significant increase in student population. The newly calculated school tax of the Garden Valley School District will be on the next property tax statement sent out in November, according to Gina Turner, Chief Deputy Treasurer of Boise County.

The school has asked for the levy amount of $127,843. That number is calculated by the state with a cost per student of $8878 and then multiplied by the 14 new students. This gives the $127,843 needed for the levy. That number divided by the overall 407 million dollars taxable property value has the percentage value of .0003136604.  “We have a levy amount that can’t go over .0006 of the market value of the 407 million dollars taxable property in our district and we are under that,” explains Garden Valley School District Superintendent/Principal Alexander.

Schools have an ADA (Average Daily Attendance) that allows them to get paid from the state per student. The ADA is compared at the same date as last year in a certain timeframe. This year the school attendance was at 234 students with 14 students greater than the 220 students at the same time last year. The ADA for the 2016-17 year finalized at 209 students.

The state does their calculations of how much the Tax funding allotment is given to the school. This is based on the number of students in attendance. Many factors are figured into this calculation. This includes growing bus routes, more stops, and more mileage involved to gather students further away. This is time and money for those miles.

Special Ed teacher, Tammy Peoples gave her a report at the Trustee meeting showing the need for another paraprofessional with a larger special needs population entering school.  Alexander explains that the office work increases as well. “More kids, more paperwork, more kids to enter into our systems. More students cause more expense. This year, for whatever reason, people are moving to GV. Of those coming here, are the majority are special needs students,” says Alexander.

School Board Vice Chair Alan Ward said, “We did not anticipate these new students coming in, though it is not uncommon. We need to be able to educate and pay for all these things.” This Emergency Levy makes the school able to educate the students above and beyond what the state had planned to pay for. The Emergency Levy was approved following the state guidelines to ask for more taxpayer help.

This is the legal explanation for the taxpayers of the school district: The Garden Valley School District has proposed to increase the amount of Ad Valorem tax dollars (Ad Valorem Tax is a tax based on the assessed value of real estate property) it collects by certifying school emergency fund levy pursuant to Section 333-805 Idaho Code for the period of school year 2018-2019. The total amount of dollars to be collected pursuant to this levy is estimated to be $127,843.  The amount of dollars to be collected pursuant to this levy on a typical home of $50,000 taxable value of last year is estimated to be a little over $15.  The amount of dollars to be collected pursuant to this levy on a typical farm of $100,000 taxable last year is estimated to be $31.00.  The amount of dollars to be collected pursuant to this levy on a typical business of $200,000 taxable value of last year’s estimated to be $62. Caution to taxpayer: the amount shown in this schedule do not reflect tax charges that are made because of voter approved bond levies, override levy, supplemental levies or levies applicable to newly annexed property.  Also, the amounts shown in the schedule are an estimate only and can vary with the amount of dollars in the levy amount certified and the taxable value of individual property. 

Vice Chair Ward says, “It is pretty hard in Boise county to get to $200,000 value in a home if you are using all of your exemptions such as the senior and/or homeowner’s exemption.”

Alexander explains, “This is to help cover those expenses such as a paraprofessional, bus routes, food service.  We need more supplies for all the kids within the building.  Kids cost us money to run the school. Every time another student walks in our door, our time is being taken up. There may be a need for another classroom.  We are trying not to open up another classroom, per se, but more students puts more pressure on this. We look at more paraprofessional help in that class when we get into 25 students. “

In looking to the funding, Alexander explains that not all of it comes in at once saying, “The Emergency Levy comes from a tax, but there are many people that don’t pay their taxes. This year we look at getting about 60% of the $127,843. Over the next year some tax trickles in if taxes are finally collected.  We never get to have it all.”

Written by Janet Juroch