According to the November 15, 2010 Fair Funding Formula proposal that was announced by Wisconsin State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Evers, the Sheboygan Area School District (SASD) would see a significant increase in state equalization aid if the basic components of the State Superintendent’s proposal for school finance were to be adopted by the Wisconsin State Legislature. If the proposal becomes law, Sheboygan homeowners would see a decrease in their school tax levy.
If the Fair Funding Formula had been in place for the 2010-11 school year, Sheboygan’s potential increased state equalization aid would have increased from the $69,587,896 that was certified by the DPI on October 15th to $79,956,167. Gretchen Thomes, SASD Assistant Superintendent of Business and Operational Services, stated, “This change would have meant no new spending or funding for schools but it would have considerably reduced the impact felt by Sheboygan Area School District taxpayers.”
Thomes added, “The district’s certified tax levy for the current budget is $40,651,296. Under the Fair Funding Formula proposal, the levy would be reduced by $10,368,271 to $30,283,025. This would result in a drop in the district’s mill rate from $11.41 per thousand to $8.50 per thousand.”
The funding proposal, as presented, would not take effect until the 2012-2013 financial year, but would bring a dramatic relief to a district that has seen the property tax levy increase by 13.28% the previous two years despite only 2.89% in increased spending.
SASD’s mill rate, which has been as high as $20.59 per thousand (1993-94) would fall dramatically to $8.50 per thousand. The increased aid would be a result of new components in the state funding formula which would distribute funding more evenly to schools and include a component in the school funding formula that accounts for local taxpayer income as well as property value.
Further information on the Fair Funding Formula proposal is available from the Department of Public Instruction’s website (www.fairfundingforourfuture.org).