As many of you are aware, local property tax bills come out in January. Hamilton County performs a reappraisal of all property values for local taxes on a six year cycle. The county’s last reappraisal was in 2017. In year three of this six year cycle, the county adjusts property values based on current property sales to update values to the fair market rate.
Due to the triennial update, property values within our school district area increased by an average of 14%, bringing our total property valuation up to 1,742,108,550. This increase puts property valuation back to where we were in 2007, at 1,717,161,508. This has our residents seeing an adjustment to their local property tax bills for calendar year 2020 beginning in January, 2021.
Property tax bills include a total of the taxes assessed on the property, including the amount collected from all levies. The money generated from these taxes is dispersed semi-annually to various local governmental entities, including Northwest Local School District (NWLSD). These tax assessments are the summation of in-side and out-side millage rates. Out-side millage rate determines the amount of tax revenue that is collected from local levies. In-side millage is determined by the Constitution of the State Of Ohio and is not voted on by the community.
Below we will cover how the 2020 triennial update involving out-side and in-side millage impacts the revenue received by NWLSD:
While the property valuation increased in total, this does not mean that the total amount paid to the school district increased. Tax levy amounts on out-side millage (voted) are fixed when passed and do not increase even when property valuation does. Some property owners values went down while others went up; however, the dollar amount the school district receives stays the same. This is called the rollback factor. The rollback factor is where the county adjusts the voter approved millage per levy down (rollback) so that they collect the same dollar amount as determined when the levy was passed even though valuation increased.
Schools do receive inflationary increases on their in-side millage. Every property has a max of 10 in-side mills (unvoted) to various taxing districts to be used for general operations, the majority of which go to their local school district. NWLSD has 6.33 in-side mills of which we receive inflationary increases. Two of these mills have been approved to be allocated to our Permanent Improvement Fund. The inflationary increase that NWLSD will receive is a total of $484,789 annually. $331,617 of these funds will be used for General Fund operations and the remainder will go to the Permanent Improvement Fund. In a full fiscal year which starts in July, these funds make up .0033 of the district’s General Fund projected revenue.
"As a district we are committed to being transparent and educating our community about how we are funded, said Amy M. Wells, NWLSD CFO & Treasurer. "Last year when we rolled out our Strategic Plan, identifying our Financial Stability Goal Area, we highlighted our commitment to communicating with our community about how our schools are funded, how funds are spent and what is needed to provide educational services. We plan to continue to provide this type of information to our stakeholders."