Friday, May 7, 2010

Special Tax Levy - $20 million to upgrade schools

On Tuesday, we will be debating the idea of including a special tax levy as part of the October 18 ballot. Should the motion pass.... when you vote for your city councillor, your mayor and your trustee in the fall, the public school electorate would also vote on this special tax. If passed by the majority of voters, the money collected would be used to upgrade our schools. Our current maintenance deficit is over $240 million. We are VERY behind in upgrading many of our schools, due to insufficient funding.

What needs to be done? Boilers (and more boilers!), windows, roofs, gym floors, painting interiors, etc.
When we compare EPSB buildings to buildings in other urban school districts, our buildings are considerably older and so the maintenance/renovation gap grows more pronounced with each passing year.

So- what would it mean to you, dollar-wise?
The tax increase (should the levy receive voter approval) would be around $20 for every $100,000 property value. So, if your house is assessed at $400,000, your taxes would increase by approximately $80.

So- what do you think?

Please let me know: I have to vote on this on Tuesday and I would appreciate your comments. Remember, the vote on Tuesday is just whether the Board should ASK the voters if they want to contribute, through a fall plebiscite. Unlike the city, we don't have the authority to impose taxes on anyone.

Here's the article in today's Journal:
http://www.edmontonjournal.com/news/Edmonton+trustee+wants+special+school+building+maintenance/2995997/story.html

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