Board OKs $5.7 million in local taxes

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

MCCOOK, Nebraska -- The McCook School Board approved the budget request of $5.7 million in local property taxes, to fund the 2011-12 school budget.

After a public hearing Monday night at which no member of the public spoke, the board later adopted the $5.7 million tax request for the general fund, bond fund and special building fund.

The 2011-12 budget totals $21,726,111.61. Last year's budget was $20 million and asked for $5.6 million in local property taxes.

The tax levy will be $1.1900 per $100 in property taxes, 1.2 cents less than last year, although property valuations have increased.This includes the levies for the general fund, bonds and early retirement buyouts.

Where the money goes

General fund: $18,166,893.00

Employer Benefit462, 772.54
Activities fund637,457.00
School lunch603,844.09
Special building fund333,265.68

Cooperative Fund Budget N/A

Student Fee50.000.00
Total budget21,726,111.61

During the "Board Comments" portion of the meeting, board member Larry Shields said he was approached by the member of the public who had concerns over the Middle Republican Natural Resources District plan to shut off wells in dry years and also raise occupation taxes on irrigated acres. He said The MRNRD will vote tonight on whether to raise the occupation taxes from $4.90 per acre to $8.50 and whether to implement a shut down of certain acres in drought years. Shields urged fellow board members to attend the meeting.

The possible shut-down of wells in dry years would affect about 55,340 acres in the school's district, he added, resulting in a loss of tax revenue of about $17 million.

This means the school district could be looking at a substantial revenue loss, Shields said, and "The school needs to look at this lost revenue, if irrigated acres are converted to dryland."

Board President Tom Bredvick agreed that agricultural land plays a huge role in the community, county and school.

The MRNRD will meet tonight at 7:30 at the Community Center in Curtis.

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