November 3, 2011 at 8:54 a.m.
The district is asking local taxpayers to approve a levy that is collected from owners of property within the district. The ballot question is for generating $350 per pupil to be added to the operating revenue of the district. North Branch estimates it needs $1.5 million to be collected through this levy, to increase spending by $350 per pupil.
According to state analysis North Branch spends less "per pupil" than almost every other district in the state of Minnesota. The Dept. of Education reports most districts are in the $9,000 to $10,000 total range for spending due to having local levy revenues. North Branch in 2009 was at $8,400 in per pupil spending including all funds.
The levy would be authorized for three years. District administrators and the School Board opted for three years because they anticipate there will be comprehensive revisions made to the state school funding formula in the near future.
The actual tax impact on your property depends on the valuation of your parcel. For an average $100,000 home the levy would add $73 per year to your property taxes. A home valuation of $200,000 equals a tax increase of approximately $147 annually.