Batavia School District proposes $7 million tax hike

The school board has published their proposed tax levy for 2013, payable in 2014. It includes an almost 13% increase in taxes for operating funds, due mostly to the Chicago Premium Outlets Mall coming onto the tax rolls after the TIF expiration. That alone would add nearly $6 million.

People are not taking the news quietly. As reported in the Kane County Chronicle 11/26/13

“I’m appealing to you to be fiscally responsible,” Batavia resident Michelle Olache told school board members. “Everyone has had to tighten their belts.”….

Batavia resident Sylvia Keppel proposed to school board members that the money from TIF No. 2 be distributed back to taxpayers through a decrease in the levy.

“If that money were to be distributed to the tax base, that would result in a drop in property taxes for the average homeowner of a $240,000 house of nearly $400,” Keppel said.

“Lower the Levy” signs are popping up around town, a website has been formed at www.LowerTheLevy.com, a Facebook page has been started, and the town is starting to buzz. But will it be enough? Will the school board listen? After all, they scheduled their public hearing on the levy immediately before their regular meeting where a vote will be taken. That leaves little time for the board to consider what they will have just heard. And as the Chronicle quoted new board member Jon Gaspar, “Right now, I am trusting the administration about what is good,” that’s not encouraging. But Christmas is a time of hope, and some residents are placing a lower tax levy on their wish list.

Residents need to email the school board with their concerns before Dec. 17 if they would like the board to lower the 2013 tax levy. They are also encouraged to attend the public hearing at 7pm, Dec. 17, at the Rosalie Jones Administration Center.

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