Monday, March 11, 2019

Tax and bond issues on April ballot

Numerous local-district school funding referendums are set to appear on the April 2 consolidated election ballot, including at least 14 bond issues, and two tax increase proposals. Many more districts would benefit from four countywide sales tax propositions earmarked for school facility purposes.

The largest of the known district school finance propositions is a $185 million building bond proposition in Barrington CUSD 220. It calls for renovating classrooms, restrooms, and food service facilities, and increasing building safety and security at District 220 schools.

The next-largest school funding proposal is in Hinsdale THSD 86, where a $139.8 million bond issue appears on the ballot. That proposal asks voters to endorse renovating and replacing portions of two high school campuses.

One tax increase proposal on the April ballot would increase the education-fund tax rate at Limestone CHSD 310 by 55 cents per $100 of equalized assessed property valuation. Another would boost the transportation-fund tax rate at Collinsville CUSD 10 by 30 cents per $100 of equalized assessed property valuation.

One other local tax question seeks to raise the limiting rate under the Property Tax Extension Limitation Law (PTELL), hiking taxes by $5.6 million in Oswego CUSD 308.

School districts known to be placing local bond issues before voters in April, in addition to the bond propositions already mentioned in Barrington and Hinsdale, include:
  • Alden-Hebron CCSD 19, a $20.3 million bond proposition to improve a building site of and build and equip a middle school/high school building
  • Bradley SD 61, a $10 million bond proposal to renovate school buildings to provide air conditioning, new windows and electrical system improvements, and repair and equip school buildings
  • Community Unit School District 4, Hebron, $6 million to build and equip an addition, and alter, repair, and equip the Unity Elementary School Building
  • East Dubuque Unit SD 119, $12 million to build and equip additions to and alter, repair, and equip the Junior High and High School Building, and establish a single campus for instructional purposes
  • Iroquois West Community Unit School District 10, $25 million to acquire land, build and equip a new high school building, and demolish all or a portion of the existing high school building, and to finance other school district capital costs
  • Minooka CCSD 201, a $50 million bond proposition to build and equip a school
  • Okaw Valley CUSD 302, $6.5 million to build and equip a gymnasium at the high school, construct a new entryway at a middle school, and add new playground equipment at an elementary school
  • St. George CCSD 258, a $6.9 million plan to build and equip classroom additions, and alter, repair, renovate, and equip a school building, which is to include providing for secure entrances and other security and safety improvements
  • Stockton CUSD 206, with three alternative building bond issues for schools, a $9.8 million level, a $12.4 million level, and an $18 million level. Voters actually have four options, they may vote for any one option, or vote no all three. The board has stated that if multiple questions pass, the district will only honor the highest single amount that passes.
  • Summersville SD 79, a $410,000 bond proposal to alter, repair, and equip the Summersville Grade School building
In addition to the school district finance propositions, countywide sales tax proposals to benefit schools are scheduled in at least four counties: Effingham, Fayette, Tazewell, and Union. Since the state law on the subject took effect in January 2008, 54 counties have adopted the retailer occupation and service occupation tax (sales tax) for the benefit of school facilities.

This blog will report on results of all the April 2 referenda.