Mad River Local Schools’ additional tax collections for the spring was more than $200,000 below what the district was projected to receive after voters approved the district’s request last March for more revenue.
While Mad River treasurer Jerry Ellender said the shortfall won’t hurt the district in the short-term, it could affect the district’s future plans if the taxes continue to go unpaid.
“Having that much of a problem with delinquencies means less revenue available in the future,” he said. “We’re not going to cut some teachers or something like that. It means in planning for the future, there may be less money available from the levy as we had hoped.”
The 5.9-mill continuing levy was projected to generate $1.4 million annually in new money for the district, and the first half ($697,710) was to be collected this spring. The actual collection finalized last week was $484,305 — a shortage of $213,405.
The fall tax collection will begin to be forwarded by the county in August and finalized in October, Ellender said. He said there’s an average of about $200,000 in delinquent taxes on each half-year settlement.
“Eventually, if the county collects those (delinquent) taxes, they will send it to us,” Ellender said. “It could be a couple-year process.”
Last March’s levy cost an additional $181 a year for an owner of a home valued at $100,000.
“We appreciate the taxpayers’ support for our schools, and that they did pass a levy and are paying the taxes,” Mad River Superintendent Necia Nicholas said. “We know within the whole nation there are problems with delinquent taxes. People have fallen on difficult times, and we understand that.”
The district’s total property tax collection for the 2012-13 school year was $10 million, with the remainder of the revenue mostly coming from the state, Ellender said.
Under the House Republicans’ K-12 school funding proposal released in April, Mad River would receive a 6 percent increase in state funding for both fiscal year 2014 and 2015, which results in a total of $23,079,731 and $24,464,515, respectively.
“It would cover the cost of inflation for expenses in our district and maintain the services we have now,” Ellender said.