What would DCSD ballot measures cost you?

Staff report
Posted 10/5/18

Voters are being asked to approve two separate measures that would bring additional funding to the Douglas County School District: Ballot Issue 5A, a $40 million mill levy override, and Ballot Issue …

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What would DCSD ballot measures cost you?

Posted

Voters are being asked to approve two separate measures that would bring additional funding to the Douglas County School District: Ballot Issue 5A, a $40 million mill levy override, and Ballot Issue 5B, a $250 million bond.

If both measures pass, the owner of a home valued at $474,000 — the example DCSD uses as the value of a typical home in the district — would pay about an additional $208 a year in property taxes, or $17.33 a month, according to the district. That's based on an increase of $44 a year per $100,000 of home value.

If neither measure passes, homeowners in the district would see a slight decrease in their property tax because of expiring district debt. The owner of a $474,000 home could expect to see a savings of about $67.50 a year, or about $5.60 a month. That's based on a tax-bill decrease of $14.25 per $100,000 of home value.

But what if only one of the measures passes?

If only the mill levy override passes, the owner of a $474,000 home could expect to pay roughly an additional $143 a year in property taxes, or $11.92 a month.

If only the bond measure passes, the owner of the same $474,000 home would continue to pay about the same amount of property tax he or she is paying now, according to the district. The new bond would take the place of expiring debt — the reason DCSD refers to 5B as a "no-new-taxes" measure. In the case of the owner of a $474,000 home, that would mean forgoing a tax cut of about $67.50 a year.

The district's older bonds are starting to get paid off, which makes this possible, according to Scott Smith, the school district's chief financial officer.

“Imagine that you had two cars and you had financed both of them," Smith said. "If you are about to pay off one of those cars, your monthly payment will drop. You have two choices: Keep those two cars and let the payment drop or buy and finance a third car and keep your monthly rate the same. That's what we are proposing with the bond — to go out and issue new bonds and keep that payment the same.”

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