Opinions

School district tax increase | Rich Hess

Leader letters to the editor
Grantsburg School District 35.8% tax increase and causes:
1. Revenue based on head count, down 25/18 FTE $9,700 x 18 = $174,600. Total revenue down by 2.64% and expenses up 3.99%.
A. Why no decrease in expenses? Overall enrollment trend is downward. Lack of corrective action pushes this on the taxpayer and is the major cause of our increase.
B. Did you run the revenue model on day two of classes as a flash? If not, why not?
C. On the loss of 25 students, what did the exit review or customer survey say as the reason they left, for future planning?
D. What actions are underway to get more revenue as other districts do?
E. District does not match marketing of great schools.
F.  Alert all taxpayers of consequences? Not done?
G. September head count two months before tax release.
H. iForward is a cash cow and brick/mortar schools are cash drains.
2. Penalized for low-cost district and no debt.
A. This is not logical or acceptable. Why pay off debt?
B. This bad process must change or school should create debt to help pay property taxpayers for 35.8% excessive tax bill.
C. District plan of action?
3. Property values increased by 5.53%.
A. The district knows way before the taxpayers.
B. Why weren’t the taxpayers informed as a heads-up?
4.  The mill rate going from high to low, then to high, was not managed. The head count is averaged, why not the mill rate?
A. The board should have calculated the taxpayer mill rate impact and not let it go down that low, 8.143 to 6.762 to 8.098.
B.  Apply the concept of smoothing.
C. People are there to manage, not go along to get along.
D. Are all seven board members asleep at the wheel?
Recommendations
1. Is the board seeing the tax impact from the taxpayer’s viewpoint?
2. Is the board not seeing life from their choices, decisions and consequences?
3. Downsize and/or replace current members with leaders who understand CDC.
4. By interest and taxpayer dissatisfaction, is there a desire to re-call one board member? Petition leader?
5. Vote NC on all school board elections, meaning no confidence.
Rich Hess 
Trade Lake


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