The Monday, October 26, 2009 Madison School Board meeting agenda will include a discussion (and presumably a vote) on the upcoming property tax rate increases. The board approved a tax hike earlier this year to make up for a reduction in state income tax and fees redistributed to local school districts due to the “Great Recession”. Reductions in property tax assessments (“Of the 73,024 parcels in the City, 53.6% are being changed (6,438 increases and 32,728 reductions”) may further drive taxes upward, certainly a challenge given current conditions.
Superintendent Dan Nerad proposed – and passed – a three year referendum that authorized spending and tax increases while providing time for the Administration to, as Board member Ed Hughes stated “put into place the process we currently contemplate for reviewing our strategic priorities, establishing strategies and benchmarks, and aligning our resources.” Ed’s “Referendum News” is worth reading.
I’ve summarized a number of links from the 2008 referendum discussion and vote below.
- A transcript of the Madison School Board’s July 28, 2008 referendum discussion. (including an mp3 audio file). The board approved the referendum on August 25, 2008 (minutes, many links)
- Public hearing links.
- The initial, public 2008/2009 budget contemplates a referendum decision.
- A July 25, 2008 Wisconsin State Journal Editorial on the local property tax “bite”.
- August 19, 2008: Superintendent Dan Nerad recommends a three year recurring referendum. That same day, Vicki McKenna and Don Severson discuss the referendum. Many notes and links.
- Two forums set on the fall, 2008 referendum. Notes from those events.
- Madison School District & Madison Teachers Union Reach Tentative Agreement: 3.93% Increase Year 1, 3.99% Year 2; Base Rate $33,242 Year 1, $33,575 Year 2: Requires 50% MTI 4K Members and will “Review the content and frequency of report cards”
It will be interesting to see what, if anything happens with the recent math, fine arts, talented and gifted task forces and the full implementation of “infinite campus“, which should reduce costs and improve services.