Manatee County Voters Support Keeping $ 1 Million School Tax

The additional $ 1 million school tax will remain in effect in Manatee County until June 2025. – Joe Hendricks | Sun

MANATEE COUNTY – Voters in Manatee County overwhelmingly approved to keep the county’s additional 1 million voters property tax passed for the first time in 2018.

A mill is equivalent to a landowner paying an additional dollar in ad valorem property taxes for every thousand dollars of assessed property value.

The 1 million mile increase adopted in 2018 was in addition to school taxes already imposed on property owners in Manatee County. Following Tuesday’s election, the additional tax will continue to be collected from Manatee County landowners until June 2025. This is in addition to the regular mileage rate collected from county taxpayers on behalf of the school district. of Manatee County.

According to unofficial county-wide election results posted on the Manatee County Election Supervisor’s website on Tuesday evening, 47,206 votes (69.27%) were cast in favor of keeping the additional school tax 1 thousandth and 20,946 votes (30.73%) were cast against continuing the additional school tax, with 68,267 ballots among the 276,204 registered voters in Manatee County.

The tax issue appeared on the ballot as follows: “Should Manatee County School Board continue the current ad valorem mileage of 1 mill from July 1, 2022 to June 30, 2025, as overseen by the Financial Oversight Committee?” citizens, to increase student achievement through more instructional time and support; recruit and retain teachers and staff with competitive salaries; expand vocational and technical education, STEM, and visual / performing arts programs; and distribute proportional funds to charter schools under Florida law 1011.71? “

School district support

A series of videos posted to the Manatee County School District website ahead of the election indicate that the additional tax revenue generated by the $ 1 million increase is helping the district attract high-quality teachers, improve teacher recruitment, provide additional teaching time, improve STEM (science, technology, engineering and math programs), renovate science labs, prepare students for jobs and improve students’ professional skills, boost professional programs and techniques, advances technology and engineering programs, and advances artistic programs.

GOP opposition

Representing the Manatee County Republican Party, the Manatee County Republican Executive Committee posted a resolution on the party’s website ahead of the election that addressed the party’s opposition to further taxation for the school district.

Manatee County Voters Support Keeping $ 1 Million School Tax
The Manatee County Republican Party opposed retaining the additional $ 1 million school tax. – Joe Hendricks | Sun

In part, this resolution states, “The Manatee County Republican Party is in favor of lower taxes and limited government. The Manatee County Republican Executive Committee opposes the continuation of the 1-thousandth ad valorem tax for the Manatee County School District. The (school) board indicated that the 2018 referendum tax would generate $ 33 million per year. In fiscal year 2020-2021, the tax actually raised almost $ 47 million. The broad scope and required supervisory authority of the Citizens Financial Oversight Committee (CFOC) created upon adoption in 2018 has been significantly reduced and limited. The June 2, 2021 letter from the Manatee County School Board, CFOC, states that “no definitive conclusions can be drawn at this time regarding success in achieving its goals.” The Manatee County School Board did not substantiate the need for the proposed tax before placing it on the ballot.

The party also paid for and distributed campaign signs against the continuation of additional taxation.

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