The Jackson County Board of Education will hold a public hearing in October to set its tax millage rate — which will remain unchanged.
The hearing will be held on Thursday, Oct. 7, at 6 p.m. — the same time that its monthly work session meeting will start at the Gordon Street Center, Jefferson.
For the fifth year in a row, the maintenance and operation (M&O) tax rate for the Jackson County School System will remain at 18.9 mills. A mill equals a tax liability of one dollar per every $1,000 of assessed value.
But unlike many recent years when the county’s climbing tax digest had brought additional revenue to the school system, this year’s digest forecasts a $2.1 million drop in taxes — compared to 2009, when the digest fell just $120,600.
“The key, I think, is continuing to be able to manage because I don’t see (that) the digest is going to increase for the next couple of years,” said board chairperson Kathy Wilbanks at its Sept. 9 work session. “So, we’re going to have to get used to doing more with less — for a while, anyway.”
Setting the tax millage rate is one of the last steps before the board of education adopts its final 2011 fiscal year budget, possibly in October.
The school system had received a $11.5 million Tax Anticipation Note (TAN) in July to keep the 2011 budget, which started on July 1, afloat until the district starts to receive tax revenue in December. As of a week ago, the school system had not tapped into the short-term loan, which must be repaid by the end of the year.
Currently, the proposed general fund budget stands at $85.3 million, with about $4.2 million estimated for an ending fund balance on June 30, 2011. The board of education adopted a tentative budget of $86.2 million in June.