The Pettisville School Board moved ahead with plans to place an income tax increase on the Aug. 7 ballot.
During the Monday, March 26 board meeting, board members voted unanimously to request a determination from the Ohio Department of Taxation on what income tax rate is required to yield $440,000 annually.
Calculations by district offi cials show a 1% income tax will result.
If approved by voters, it will double the income tax paid by school district residents. Pettisville schools currently collect a 1% income tax. Spending Tops Revenues
Prior to approving the request, the board reviewed the five-year forecast update provided by Chris Lee, district treasurer.
The forecast shows the district spending more than it takes in beginning this fiscal year, and continuing every year with ever-larger shortfalls.
Currently the district has a cash balance that can serve as a cushion. Eventually, the balance will be depleted.
Lee told the board that income tax collections have been higher than expected, and that the income tax estimate in the forecast may be a little low.
Dan Sauder pointed out that as the economy improves, income tax revenues should go up.
The five-year forecast “basically shows the income tax as flat,” Lee said.
But he pointed out that it also predicts flat levels in most spending, including no increase in base salaries.
The forecast takes into account incremental, or “step,” increases teachers receive for additional years of service, along with increases in health insurance costs. Wind Turbine
Lee also told the board that potential savings from the electricity-generating wind turbine were not included in the five-year forecast.
Turbine construction is planned to begin this summer.
Toledo Edison, the school’s electricity supplier, predicts electric bills for the district could go from $76,000 annually to no bill at all once the wind turbine becomes operational, depending on wind conditions.
The five-year forecast will be updated again in May. Additional information should be available at that time.–D J. Neuenschwander