Published 8:18 pm Wednesday, May 30, 2007
Renewing tax won't cause increase
On June 5, the renewal and continuation of a 1-mill countywide levy and a 3-mill district tax for public schools will be on the ballot for the citizens of Escambia County to approve. The vote to renew these taxes is simply that - renewal. Both of these taxes were originally passed in the mid-1920s. Therefore, a vote for tax renewal on June 5 will not increase your present tax bill. A “yes” vote will simply maintain status quo in the funding of our public schools.
Our schools need our “yes” vote to maintain the present funding level of 17 mills. Also, our “yes” votes collectively make a resounding statement to all entities who are looking at our community to relocate and/or establish a new business. A community that strongly supports its public schools already meets one of the most important criteria that a new business or industry will assess before making the decision to relocate or expand. A “yes” vote will renew not only the four mills, but also renew our commitment to our schools and community.
I have utmost confidence that we will make an affirmative statement on June 5 in support of our schools and for continued improvement of educational programs. These improvements may include expanding instructional and technological programs, hiring additional highly qualified teachers to reduce class sizes and enhance curricular offerings, providing adequate maintenance and repairs of existing buildings, and enabling our school leaders and stakeholders to make capital improvements in the foreseeable future that could accelerate the construction of new facilities to replace antiquated structures.
On June 5, let's go to the polls, vote “yes” for the renewal and continuation of a levy of the 1-mill countywide school tax and vote “yes” for the renewal and continuation of a levy of the 3-mill school district tax. Let's keep moving forward and remain in the forefront of supporting our public schools, and consequently our community.
Dr. Karen A. Flanagan