Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Amber follows up on "Two Cans of Pop"

[from the comments]

I just finished a School Finance class from the University of Dayton. There, I learned that what Mike is saying is true. Take the market value or your house (say you could sell it for $150,000). You multiply that by 35% in order to determine the assessed value. $150,000*0.35= $52,500. This is your assessed value and the value that that determines how you are taxed for all schools in the state of Ohio. In order to convert 3.39 mils to a decimal form, you must divide by 1000. 3.39/1,000= 0.0039. To know how much more you will have to pay in taxes, you multiply your assessed value by the rate. $52,500*0.00339= $177.98. (Note that Mike used different starting numbers). If you live in your house, you will receive a 10% rollback credit. $177.98*0.10= $17.80. That is what you will save, which means you will pay $177.98-$17.80= $160.18. However, if you live in the house that you own, which most people do, you get an additional 2.5% credit. That means $177.98*0.125= $22.25 in credit. So you would pay $177.98-$22.25= $155.73. You can divide that number to make it fit into your budget however you deem necessary.

I was a teacher at Greenville and I was cut from my position. When that happened, my husband and I lost 37% of our income. We made changes in our lifestyle and now we are living on a lot less than what we were before. Every house has places where they could cut, it is just finding your individual priorities. For us, it was the DVR that had to go. For Mike, it is two pops. Maybe it involves cutting coupons to use at the grocery store or buying generic instead of name brand. The point he is trying to make is that most people can reduce $2.00 in their budget a week. Based on my numbers, it would be $3.00 a week since I used a slightly higher market value of home.

Also, let me say this. In my class, I also learned that due to HB920, which is House Bill 920, Greenville schools will not receive any more money for this levy in the event that the appraisal of your home increases from the 2011 reappraisal. HB920 says that if you pay $155.73 a year to the school based on your current appraisal value, that value will remain the same even if the market value of your home increases from $150,000 to $165,000. You will not pay any more than the what you use to vote. That makes this a good time to pass a levy. If you pass the levy now, it will be passed on your current market value. If your market value goes UP, your taxes paid to the school will remain the same.

From the viewpoint of the school, HB920 is frustrating because inflation impacts the value of the homes in the community, but the school does not see that inflation in the taxes. So even though it costs more for the school to buy food for the cafeteria, supplies for the classroom, and training for its teachers, the school receives the same amount of money until another levy is passed. From the viewpoint of the taxpayer, it saves the day! You pass a levy before your taxes increase and you get to pay the same amount of money each year, regardless of the amount of your home at reappraisal.

One last thing I feel the need to address is you as a taxpayer need to make sure that you are getting all of your tax credits. Visit the county auditor's webpage at www.darkecountyrealestate.org and make sure that you are getting all of your tax credits. Some of the people in my class found out that they were not getting all of their tax credits

Elderly and disable, if you are a homeowner 65 years of age or older or totally disabled, you can receive additional property tax relief. This shields you from paying taxes on $25,000. So if you owned my example home above with a market value of $150,000, you would be billed as if your home was only worth $125,000 and taxes would be determined based on this new number. The catch to this is that you have to apply. If you visit the website previously mentioned, you can check to see if you are getting this Homestead Tax Reduction and if you are not receiving it, you can apply to receive it!

As for those criticizing the way the school spends its money, please know this. The school receives a bondage rating. This is similar to a credit score. If a person has a bad credit score, he or she is not eligible to receive loans. It is based on the way the individual spends his/her money and a few other things such as claims filed to car insurance companies. The school's bondage rating is scored basically the same way. If Greenville City Schools could just spend money any way that it wanted to do so, it would have a poor bondage rating score and would not be eligible to receive a loan to pay for its portion of the new building.

41 comments:

  1. Excellent information, and very understandable. Thank you.

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  2. The last operating levy passed and the school is broke again!

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  3. still vote NO on the school levy,its hard to cut corners,when your on a fixed income and cant make it now.why would you want taxes to go up?

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  4. Does anyone think they will not come begging for another levy if this passes? This is the beginning, not the end.

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  5. Great stuff, Amber.

    Dirt, if the school was broke, they'd be asking for more operating funds. They are not. This new school will actually lower operating costs, helping prevent the need for additional operating levies.

    Anon 856: An additional $5-$10 per month will not break any budget. Your utilities will fluctuate more than that amount.

    Too many people stop at the word "increase" before looking at how much is being asked for and how much you are getting in return in the form of a community asset.

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  6. jme,

    if they do, vote no on that. An undetermined future issue is not a valid argument for or against this one.

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  7. Great info, but remember this is only a 4 grade level building, I feel that will not be enough, can I have some info on the drop in students per year since the year 2000.

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  8. I do believe that a couple of our elementary schools are in really bad shape, and that they need to be discarded. However, the current plan is dictated by state money, and I don't think that plan makes much sense.

    We'll be getting a building that doesn't even fully serve all of our elementary students. And while they build this school that doesn't address our younger elementary students, it will continue to be true that the most important building in a town of our size is probably the high school. However, because of money dangled in our faces by the state that dictates we build a new elementary building, we feel compelled to follow its dictates.

    This is a recipe for doing what's expedient, not what makes sense. The land that we own off of Ohio street will not fit an entire complex of schools that serves our students from K through 12. So land is at a premium. No doubt, in a decade or two, rumblings of the need for a new high school (not to mention a new building for our youngest elementary students) will begin. And those rumblings will most likely be entirely ignored (that is, if the current project goes forward) and what we will end up with is a really nice elementary school building in this town, and a high school that lags far behind.

    Instead of the current plan, put together a comprehensive plan to be unveiled when the economy stabilizes. Propose that the current high school be renovated and then used to house grades K-6 (or K-7 or K-8... whatever makes sense numbers-wise). Then build a new high school on the land off of Ohio. This makes so much more sense in terms of building use. The current high school is used for so many other purposes besides the schooling of our students. The community uses it for exercise walking during the winter, there are meetings there, rooms are rented for adult education, and you have the non-stop sporting events. Build a new high school and renovate the current high school for use by elementary students, and we are done building schools for a long, long time. And if the new high school is done properly, we could even elect to add a "Community Center" aspect to the project.


    I believe people would be much more likely to support such a plan because of its overall impact on the community, and for the simple fact that it would end the need for any new buildings in the district for a long time.

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  9. Vote NO on School Levy!! If I got a raise like some of the school employees just received ($3,000-$8,000) I am sure alot of us would be more able to pay for more taxes

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  10. So how soon can we expect all these businesses to start moving into town that the board has promised?

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  11. An argument I keep hearing is, “why is it always the property owners?” To answer that, I crunched some of my own numbers. But first, I want to note that it isn’t just the property owners.

    Nearly everyone who lives in Greenville pays property tax directly or indirectly. Several renters that I know are very irritated when they keep hearing that they don’t pay. A smart landlord will charge tenants enough to pay all expenses plus a little extra for profit. To maintain a profit margin, if the landlord sees an increase in property tax they must pass it along to the tenant in the form of a rent increase.

    A big benefit to property tax over income tax is that businesses only pay if it’s a property tax. If you look around Greenville, the biggest and most valuable (and highest taxed) properties are commercial. With a property tax, the businesses share significantly. Without that participation, such as an income tax, the hit to individuals would be much higher.

    I have calculated the tax increase for some select businesses below. The source data came from the Auditor’s Office website. For simplicity, this is just the calculation of Assessed Value multiplied by the millage.

    Business name – Appraised Value – Tax Increase on 3.39 mills

    Walmart* $4,990,800 – $5,921.58/yr
    McDonald’s - $941,000 - $1,116.50/yr
    Lowes - $5,226,900 - $6,249.19/yr
    Andersons Marathon Ethanol* – $28,000,000 - $33,222.00/yr

    *Combined value of multiple parcels making up the property

    As you can see, the businesses are a major contributor under a property tax. Roughly, Andersons share would be that of 300 homes valued at $100,000. Whether or not you are in favor of the levy, I hope this helps explain why a property tax really is the best way to fund this kind of project.

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  12. Very good information. I have changed my mind and will vote "YES" this time. Our kids are worth this much.

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  13. Are any of you who say you can't afford it willing to post your monthly budget here?

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  14. Hyrem D. GoldmansteinJuly 27, 2010 at 1:22 PM

    Monthly Budget

    Social Security: Not enough
    Insurance: Takes more than what I started with
    Money left for Levy: -$700/month

    I'm forced to vote no.

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  15. Very good info!!!!!! I am voting YES!!!

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  16. NO means NO!! Post a monthly budget? Are you nuts? Are you saying that people have to prove to you or anyone else that they can't afford it? Grow up....sometimes people just don't agree!

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  17. I remember that there was an architect hired when Dr. Weedy was superintendent, there was a complete drawing (that I personally seen) for the purchased property off 121, both a high school was drawn and an elementary was drawn, now someone claimed that there is not enough room for both schools at the purchased site!!!???

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  18. Does the Andersons pay property tax? I thought Mayor Fraley abated their taxes. I am not for sure on that one, will somebody fill us in.

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  19. Don't forget, walmart got tax money back from the school.

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  20. monthly budget
    unemployed 0 income
    no social security,no public state assistance,no unemployment check
    now,tell me how to budget my money!!
    still,vote NO to a new school....

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  21. You people are all full of it, this community has voted no several times we have spoken...Get over it, and stop making promises that you will be in a year crying over and taking away..no school fees...please give me a break!!! I'm sick of hearing about this.
    VOTE NO PEOPLE!!!!

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  22. monthly budget;
    no unemployment benifits,no social security benifits,no welfare or state beifits,now, how do you a monthly budget on that.and you want our taxes to go up!! i dont see it!!
    STILL VOTE NO,ON THE SCHOOL LEVY

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  23. This two cans of soda formula, assumes that the assessed value of my property is what I could expect if sold...False. It doesn't take into consideration I have not had a raise in two years and it doesn't look like that will change in the near future. I also must take two weeks off without pay every year due to my employers budget problems. I am paying more in utilities, food, fuel, healthcare and every other catagory. So I am not convinced.

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  24. I agree with Mike...we are all on a "fixed" budget. The paycheck I bring home every 2 weeks is also "fixed". It's the same amount! I no longer have a child in the school system, but I, personally, would be embarrassed to say I am not willing to give up 2 cans of soda a week to invest in my school system and my community. The Wal-Mart parking lot is full of cars "saving money" at the expense of our local mom and pop businesses. The fast food restaurants are packed with people purchasing items off of the "dollar" menu at the expense of our health and well-being. Are those of you voting no on the levy really voting no because of 2 bucks a week? If you have no more pride in the town you live in, perhaps Greenville isn't the town for you. If you are voting no because of the prior administration, get over it...I believe the superintendent and other administrators inherited a mess and are doing what is best for the future of our children and our community.

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  25. Seriously people?? You can't afford $2-$3/week?? I bet you can, you just don't want to. I don't want higher taxes, however my oldest child attended South the last two years and will be attending the Junior High this next year. These buildings are really old and in really bad shape. If not now, when??? How much longer can the school district keep band-aiding these schools. Again, I don't want to pay higher taxes now either, but I don't want Greenville losing any more kids. There are lots of kids living in Greenville but attending other county schools. Plus there are other families moving out of the area because Greenville doesn't support their school system. These kids deserve better buildings than what they have. Sure the district is going to come back later for a new elementary (Pre-K-4) school. They are going to have to at some point. Although the other schools aren't as critical right now. The school district shouldn't need a new high school for a while if they take care of it. If you are worried about them needing more money to build those schools, vote no then. Please people this is very needed!! Let's put what has happened in the past in the past. Taking a page from Covington...GREENWAVE PRIDE, LET'S BUILD IT!

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  26. I too have not received a raise in 2 yrs. Yet all my expenses continue to climb. I do not own a cell phone, nor subscribe to cable, have the cheapest internet service possible and I buy my clothes (an average of 3 clothing items a yr) at Goodwill. This yr. I planted alot more garden and have cut back to 2 meals a day & I don't buy junk food. I don't have air conditioning in my home and I keep my heat as about as low as the thermostat will go in the winter. So tell me where else can I cut? I just read this wk that A T & T will be raising their rates in the fall-almost 2.00 a month so when you say it's only 2.06 a week extra to cut in one's budget, well that's just for the levy-what about everything else that continues to increase?

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  27. The schools and our community desperately need the new school building. Okay, so how does the school board justify passing administative pay raises just before people who must tighten belts are expected to vote to make them tighter? Not only that, but just before teachers union "negotiations?" This will empower the union to demand another raise, and who can argue with them? Out of respect for the people who pay their wages, shouldn't school pay remain flat, if not sustain moderate cuts? New school or not, they will soon run out of money again and will be crying "It's for the children." Education is too important to be entrusted to those so irresponsible and lacking in consideration.

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  28. anon @ 940

    if your scenario is true, by all means, vote no.

    I would bet you're in a very thin minority group in terms of how close you are to poverty (unless somehow you make good money but have an astronomical house payment or something).

    The community should not be held back because a few are in dire straights. There will always be a segment in dire straights, even in a booming economy.

    Therefore, unless the amount of people that close to losing everything is way higher than it can logically be, it is not enough of a reason to vote no for me, and logically should not be a reason for everyone else who can afford it to vote no, either.

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  29. Check your tax forms now and see how much goes to the school, plus what you pay in income tax??? What is the rest goes to the city and county which is alot less than the schools get. I get more services from them than the schools. Why should I vote for more of what I don't get. No is No!

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  30. I see my last comment did'nt get posted. A bit to REAL for DJ

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  31. The last post is probably the strongest argument I've read in the last year for voting against the levy. Even in that extreme case, I can't help but think of my grandfather who was born in the early 1900s. He was a kid when a few of these schools were built and was an adult when the rest of them were built. He lived simply and somehow that generation made it happen. I can hear him laughing at anyone who has the money to buy a computer and pay for the internet who then writes a comment about how they can't afford to support a school for their hometown. If we had a few more like him, this community wouldn't be in the shape it is.

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  32. I can afford the cost I choose not to vote yes.

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  33. I guess I'd prefer an honest fool to a dishonest one.

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  34. Again the pro tax hikers call names. You wonder why you and the board have little credibility with the citizens?

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  35. 75% of the people that live in Greenville are on welfare anyway, so those that are responsible enough to own a home and pay taxes are paying for the welfare taxes as well. Figure that into your plan for building your stupid school!

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  36. I am not pro tax, I am pro Greenville. I have nothing to do with the school board and I don't have any kids in the school. I'm not interested in having credibility with you. I'm interested in saving this town from people like you who have no credibility with me. "Fool" is the most charitable word I could think of.

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  37. clam,

    90% of the people in the world like chocolate.

    I can invent statistics, too.

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  38. versailles people were told that a new school would bring many new familes to versailles. well the school is finished and there many houses for sale and apartments for rent in the school district. guess it didnt work. jobs bring in new people. more so than schools. we do need good schools also.

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  39. I am so glad to be an American!! Having the right to vote as I wish in a private booth. I only wish we could vote to replace some of the administration that the board has in power. Only then could your ever consider a new school.

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  40. Voting No again! Responsibility FIRST...No new taxes!

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  41. New school wil NOT attract new buisness. Can't you all see that companies are building on the interstates? Not 30 min. from one. Still a NO vote.

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