During their Oct. 23 budget hearing, the Melrose-Mindoro School District decided to reduce their regulatory levy for the 2017-2018 school year which will reduce the mill rate residents will see next tax season.
The board decided to reduce the mill rate for the coming school year to $12.94. The mill rate is $0.80 less than the previous year’s mill rate of $13.74.
DeBerg said that the reduction in levy is mainly due to additional funding coming from the state and other income, which added more than $335,000 to the budget for this year.
The district decided to reduce the levy despite the fact that they are under-levying by $590,000 because of the levy override referendum previously passed by the district.
While the mill rate has decreased, DeBerg cautioned that not everyone may see a reduction in their property taxes because the district-wide equalized value on property in the district increased 3.31 percent over last year.
“That increase in equalized value could be new homes or businesses or changes to the home,” DeBerg said.
DeBerg said that if someone made a change to their home that increased the value of their home or if the value of homes in a specific district increased, their property taxes would also increase.
“Everybody likes to see their market value go up until the tax bill comes,” DeBerg said.
The consolidated campus project is also progressing. DeBerg estimated the project to be under budget by about $800,000 and he said it is on schedule. The school district also installed an $800,000 contingency fund that has not been used yet.
For the 2016-2017 school year, the school was under-budget and added $82,501.19 to its fund balance.
“We are balancing our budget,” DeBerg said adding that this should help with the school’s bond rating and reduce interest rates on the future loans for the consolidated campus project.