Great News - tax levy will reduce by 5%

Great News - tax levy will reduce by 5%
Posted on 10/27/2021
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Dear MPSD Families and Staff, 


We want to share some good news about the school district’s finances and budget.


Our 2021-2022 school district property tax levy rate will be decreasing by 39 cents to the lowest level in at least 37 years, thanks to rising property values and increased state aid.


At its meeting Tuesday, the Board of Education unanimously approved a 2021-2022 school district budget that sets the school tax rate at $7.42 per $1,000 of equalized property value, down 5% from last year’s rate of $7.81 per $1,000. This is MPSD’s lowest tax rate since at least 1984, according to records kept by the state Department of Public Instruction. (The highest rate was $16.13 per $1,000 in 1990.)


MPSD’s tax levy rate remains among the lowest in Manitowoc County and lower than the majority of K-12 school districts statewide. The district also is close to becoming debt-free, with a final payment scheduled by the end of 2023. 


We are committed to being strong fiscal stewards and once again thank the community for the trust placed in us last spring with the referendum approval that has strengthened our financial position.


The approved 2021-2022 budget includes the launch of our new MPSD virtual charter school (McKinley Academy), continued free meals for families and health and safety mitigation during the pandemic, and a 1.23% increase in salaries and benefits for staff. 


About 78 cents of MPSD’s $7.42 school tax rate will fund private school vouchers, an increase of about six cents or 12% more than last year. The state sets private school voucher aid and authorizes local school districts to collect that aid from local taxpayers. The amount that MPSD taxpayers have paid toward private school vouchers has risen substantially, from nearly $151,000 in 2016 to more than $2.2 million for the 2021-2022 budget approved Tuesday.


While we are in a good position for this budget, our next budget could pose issues due to the likely expiration of pandemic-related aid and one-time exemptions. While enrollment is up in 4- and 5-year-old kindergarten and in the new virtual charter school, overall district-wide student enrollment was down about 44 students in the official third Friday count in September. As a low spending district, MPSD’s levy is and will continue to be under the state average.


We are carefully monitoring our finances to ensure we are focusing our efforts on improving student achievement and outcomes. 


With MPSD pride,


Mark Holzman

Superintendent

Manitowoc Public School District



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