Half Penny for Schools

Half Penny for Schools

Citrus_half_penny_2016Mail in election ballots for the August 30th primary have begun being mailed, and no issue for our school district’s future may be more important than the Half-Penny for Schools Capital Referendum.

The State Legislature in 2008 have reduced the maximum millage rate a local school district can levy—first from 2.0 down to 1.75 mils, and then again down to 1.5 mils.  This coupled with the reduction in property values means that since 2008 Citrus County School district has lost and have had to cut over $75 million dollars from capital outlay with over $40 million dollars in the last four years alone.  School Districts around the state have been 13647107_10207372251841024_2142720360_oforced to request from voters’ school funding referendums so that schools’ capital needs may be adequately funded.  Nearly every surrounding county school district has had to pass a referendum to help fund school capital needs.  In addition, even with the new gas plants coming on line, soon Citrus County will lose two more electric generating plants at the local energy plant.

CaptureCitrus County Schools is recognized as a High Performing School District by the Florida Department of Education in part due to our School District’s positive annual financial audits. Citrus County Schools is one of the lowest school districts in Florida for the percent of budget spent on district-level expenditures.  As a school district our School Board, Superintendent, administrators, departments, schools, teachers and staff focus on classroom needs.

Cutting the budget more and priority funding alone will not be enough.  That is why the School Board unanimously approved a ballot referendum for funding Citrus School’s Capital needs to be placed on the August 30th, 2016 primary ballot. 

Citrus_half_penny_2016_w_vote (2)The funds raised will all stay locally! It is estimated that this referendum could raise approximately $6.5 million dollars annually. It is projected that 20% of the tax will be paid by tourists and out of county residents. The cost annually for Citrus—it is estimated that a family of four with an average household income of $40,000 the estimated tax will be $50 per year or $4.17 per month.  The benefits to our students, schools, community and potentially to property values for a continually highly rated successful school district is enormous.

I urge you to support this very important referendum.

For more information, visit http://citruseducation.com/salestax.htm

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