December 12, 2010

Board edgy over building tax hike

Board edgy over building tax hike
By JILL DENNING GACKLE

There was a minor case of cold feet at a recent Garrison School Board meeting.
Board member Steve Seidler asked, “Is the community ready for a $5 million, $10 million bond issue?” Seidler asked the question when board members discussed the preliminary plans to add to and remodel the two schools.
Seidler said he spoke to McLean County Auditor Les Korgel and learned that a $5 million bond issue over 20 years could add about $100 a year to a house valued at $100,000. He said a 25-30 mill increase would mean about $55 a year on a quarter of farm land valued at about $50,000.
Seidler, who has publicly expressed enthusiasm for the project, said, “Five million dollars is a large sum of money and $100 a year is a large sum of money.”
He suggested that the board nail down estimated costs on proposed remodeling and addition plans to the two schools as soon as possible.
“We need to let the public know what it is going to cost them,” he said.
He suggested the board invite Korgel to a future meeting to explain bond issues, mill levies and how the bonding process works. He said Korgel told him the county hoped to be able to build a new courthouse without additional property taxes, which the board members agreed would help them on this proposed school project.
Other board members seemed to understand Seidler’s concerns.
Karla Scheresky, board member, said, “That was the first question that was asked of me: how much will it cost me?”
Bonnie Nygard said education of the public will be critical.
 


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