District 67 School Board approves levy increase
Updated: December 30, 2012 6:09AM
MORTON GROVE — Golf Elementary School District 67 officials are asking for a nearly 5 percent property tax increase for next year, though they expect to receive much less.
On Nov. 15, School Board members approved the 2012 levy totaling almost $7.35 million, an increase of 4.97 percent.
The request includes the 3 percent allowed under the Cook County Tax Cap and another 1.97 percent designed to capture taxes from any new construction in the district, which is exempt from the cap.
The vote came after public hearing in which the board did not receive any comments from residents.
Under the tax cap, the district can increase the levy an amount equivalent to the Consumer Price Index or 5 percent, which ever is less.
District business manager Jim Fitton explained that the CPI governing the 2012 levy was set at 3 percent. The 2012 levy determines the amount of property taxes the district can collected next year.
Fitton reported that while the additional levy was added to capture new construction, he does not anticipate that the amount will come in anywhere close to that.
“It will probably be more like 3.1 percent (total increase),” Fitton explained.
He noted that the amount of new construction in the district has declined since peaking in 2008. The amount totaled $4 million in 2009, but dropped to $2 million by 2011, according to a chart Fitton presented to the School Board.
The equalized assessed valuation of the district also has been declining, Fitton noted. In 2009, the highest point in recent years, it totaled about $386 million. In 2011, the equalized assessed valuation had dropped to about $306 million.
That, Fitton said, means that taxpayers in the district have seen the district’s tax rate increase, but it has not meant additional money for the district.
The tax rate in the district was at $1.81 per 100 equalized assessed valuation in 2008. In 2011, the figure had climbed to $2.45, Fitton noted.
The bulk of the levy is earmarked for the district’s education fund, which pays teachers’ salaries. That cost totals about $5.8 million. The district’s other large fund is operations and maintenance, which totals $1.14 million.