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Grandview voters being asked to OK school levy

GRANDVIEW – Because the Grandview School District’s current maintenance and operation levy, approved by voters in 2009, will expire at the end of 2014 the Grandview School Board last night (Thursday) approved a resolution placing a replacement levy on the Feb. 11, 2014 Special Election ballot.

The school district’s finance director, Brad Shreeve, told the school board that there are a few changes included in the resolution. Last month, he presented information about the levy to the board, but he has since learned property values have increased by just 1 percent.

That means the amount of money to be collected from property taxes would not be the same as originally projected without an increase in the levy amounts originally proposed.

At Schreeve’s urging, the board approved asking voters for approximately $1.88 per $1,000 assessed property value in 2015, which will provide the district with just more than $1.3 million. An increase of 6 cents per $1,000 assessed property value will be collected in 2016 for $1.4 million, and another increase of 9 cents per $1,000 assessed property value will be collected in 2017. The final year of the four-year levy, a tax of $2.11 per $1,000 of assessed valuation will provide the school district with more than $1.5 million.

The replacement levy, if approved by voters, will expire at the end of 2019.

“The Grandview School District sets levies at the lowest rate possible to maximize levy equalization dollars from the state of Washington,” said Schreeve.

He said the Grandview School District asks voters to approve maintenance and operation levies to bridge the gaps between what the state funds and what community members expect in education.

Levy dollars are used for curriculum, highly capable programs, technology, student transportation, athletics, field trips and staffing needs.

Shreeve said once a levy is approved, the school district reviews the needs of the students and schools to determine where the money will be best utilized.

Grandview residents are with the current levy paying just more than $1.75 for every $1,000 of assessed property value when paying property taxes. That is just more than $17.50 for a home that is valued at $100,000.

For every dollar collected Grandview receives approximately $3.14 from the state in levy equalization funds.

The Grandview School Board by a 3-0 vote approved the resolution, placing the levy on the Feb. 11, 2014 ballot.

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