Frequently Asked Questions
What does Logan Elm have on
the ballot in March?
Voters will be asked to renew two operating
levies. The first levy is referred to as
an emergency levy and is a property tax with an estimated rate of 2.4
mills. The second levy is a 1% earned
income tax. Both renewals are for 5
Are these new levies?
The emergency levy has been in place since 1990. The 1% income tax has been in place since
2005. Both levies were originally passed
to avoid operating deficits and have been renewed every five years to keep the
Are these levies tax increases?
No, these renewals would simply keep tax
rates the same for 5 more years.
What is an “emergency” levy?
An emergency levy is a property tax levy
that specifies a dollar amount to be generated each year to avoid an operating
deficit. Logan Elm needed an additional
$812,000 each year to avoid an operating deficit 30 years ago.
The word “emergency” may puzzle voters. An emergency is defined as a serious, unexpected situation that requires immediate action. Once action is taken, an emergency usually passes. So why would you need an emergency levy for 30+ years?
- The School District’s emergency was an impending operating deficit. Think about your household budget. If you needed a certain amount of money 30 years ago to make ends meet, you most likely need that much and more to make ends meet today. The same is true for Logan Elm Schools. We continue to rely on this $812,000 to balance our operating budget each year.
What is an earned
An earned income tax only applies
to the following:
= --Employee compensation
such as wages, salaries and tips
= --Self-employment income from sole proprietorships and partnerships
Logan Elm’s 1% earned income tax does not apply to other items such as retirement income, interest, dividends and capital gains.
What is the purpose of these
Both the emergency levy and 1% earned
income tax are operating levies. They pay
for ongoing costs including teacher salaries, utilities, upkeep of school
facilities, and bus transportation.
How do Logan Elm’s taxes compare to area school districts?
The School District looked at its taxes and
local report card rating compared to surrounding districts when recently
working with Baird on a bond rating. The
following chart shows what our average taxpayer would pay if they moved their
house and income to each district.
Amounts include all property and income taxes paid from living in the
respective school district, except city income tax and county sales tax.
As you can see, Logan Elm has the 6th most affordable taxes out of the 20 districts shown. Logan Elm has the lowest taxes of districts receiving a “B” or better on the local report card. This comparison includes the emergency levy and 1% earned income tax up for renewal.
Why did my tax bill go up (or
down) this year?
Homeowners recently received their first half property tax bill. Property tax is a product of tax rates and property value. Changes in either can cause your taxes to go up or down. Here are a couple items that may have affected the amount of property tax you’ll pay in 2020:
- Hocking County
went through triennial update in 2019. The
County Auditor adjusts property values upon triennial update based on sales
that have taken place in the past three years.
Most homeowners would have seen an increase due to a strong housing
market in recent years.
- The School District’s overall property tax rate went down primarily because we were able to secure a better than expected interest rate on our bonds. A rate reduction would reduce your taxes if your home value stayed the same.
These changes in property taxes do not
erase the need for the emergency levy and 1% earned income tax renewals.
What will happen if the
renewal levies fail?
The two renewal levies make up 16% of the District’s operating revenue. Continuation of these levies is vital to fund our existing instructional and extracurricular programs. If the levies are not renewed before the end of 2020, the District will lose over $3.4 million per year and have to make substantial budget cuts to make ends meet.