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|Abingdon School Board Talks County-Wide Tax
|The Abingdon School Board is among others in the area talking about a sales tax that would benefit school districts in a county based on their enrollment numbers.
District 217 Superintendent Dr. Tami Roskamp went over the County Schools Facility Occupation Tax Law with the board of education at Wednesday night's meeting. The law went into effect in October of 2007 and helps school districts generate revenue through sales taxes rather than property taxes.
Districts in the area are taking a hard look at the maximum 1 percent tax after not receiving money promised by the state, which is dealing with a $13 billion budget deficit that remains unresolved.
Abingdon school board member Roger Schrodt says he cannot support the tax.
"Knox County's poverty, I mean, is one of the highest-level poverties (by) county in the state," Schrodt said. "I don't know. You hear the street talk and, I mean, everybody says 'will you hire teachers?' and stuff. I think, there's going to be a misconception of how the money is gonna be spent."
Schrodt says, to him, the tax is a back-door referendum. The largest school district in the county, Galesburg District 205, would have to support the tax for it to move to the county board and have a chance to go on the ballot for the public to decide.
Roskamp reminded Schrodt and the board that the tax money can only be spent on facilities or abating bonds - NOT salaries or savings. She estimated the school district could generate $300,000 a year through the tax. It would apply to general merchandise, excluding things like unprepared food, drugs, vehicles, and RVs.
|05 13 10 by Newsroom
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