This is a request to levy .9861 mills, similar to what voters approved in 2012, on all properties. The funds will be used for repairing facilities, making site improvements to school buildings, athletic facilities, playgrounds, and other structures. In addition, the proposal would allow the expanded use of funds, signed into law in 2017, for school security improvements and for the acquisition or upgrading of technology. Okemos voters have approved a Building and Site Sinking Fund for the last 30 years.
Will my taxes increase if the sinking fund is approved?
No. In 2012 the community approved a Building and Site Sinking Fund Millage renewal of .9919 mills which expires on Dec. 31, 2021. The current request is to have an expanded sinking fund for 10 years at the current levy of .9861 mills (the previously approved 0.9919 mill has eroded slightly since 2012 due to Headlee Millage Reduction Fraction).
Why does the Ballot Language use the words “increase”? If this is what we are already paying, isn’t this a “renewal”?
In March 2017, legislation was signed into law which expanded the uses of sinking fund proceeds to include school security improvements and for the acquisition or upgrading of technology. In addition the new law limited sinking funds to 3 mills for 10 years. That is a reduction from previous law which allowed 5 mills over 20 years. Since Okemos Public Schools would utilize Sinking Fund dollars for the expanded uses, the millage language cannot say renewal. Although the ballot must state that this is a millage increase, it would actually extend the current tax rate for an additional 10 years. This millage represents no increase in the current tax rate.
If approved, the millage would:
- Provide funding outside the operational budget to invest in upkeep and repair of the school district’s buildings and facilities.
- Ensure that the school district’s limited operating funds are available to support student learning.
- Ensure that Okemos is able to replace 1-1 student instructional technology and security on a consistent basis in consideration of technology advances.
Watch the presentation below to learn more about this Sinking Fund Millage Proposal
What is the Ballot Language?
OKEMOS PUBLIC SCHOOLS SINKING FUND MILLAGE PROPOSAL
“Shall the limitation on the amount of taxes which may be assessed against all property in Okemos Public Schools, Ingham County, Michigan, be increased by and the board of education be authorized to levy not to exceed 0.9861 mill ($0.9861 on each $1,000 of taxable valuation) for a period of 10 years, 2022 to 2031, inclusive, to create a sinking fund for the construction or repair of school buildings, for school security improvements, for the acquisition or upgrading of technology and all other purposes authorized by law; the estimate of the revenue the school district will collect if the millage is approved and levied in 2022 is approximately $1,388,700?”
Where Can I Find Out More?
To find out more information see the Frequently Asked Questions about this Sinking Fund Millage Proposal on the Okemos Public Schools website, or email firstname.lastname@example.org