School district looks to freeze tax rate at 2013 level
by Laura Haley
Contributing Writer
Jul 24, 2014 | 797 views | 0 0 comments | 38 38 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The Grand County Board of Education will hold a Truth in Taxation hearing next month to inform property owners of the board’s intention to freeze the certified tax rate for the upcoming year.

The board is considering freezing the tax rate for the 2014-2015 fiscal year in order to save more money to help either update or build new facilities for Grand County Middle School, board President Jim Webster said.

“Through this, we will be able to put an additional $200,000 into the capital building fund in order to make some sort of move on the middle school,” he said. “We’re building toward a large annual payment.”

Webster said that while work needs to be done at the middle school now, the board doesn’t currently have the money available to make the improvements.

Last year, after considering several options for funding the construction needs at GCMS, the school board voted to create the capital development fund with the intention of putting $200,000 into the fund each year.

Grand County School District Business Administrator Robert Farnsworth said that while the overall tax rates levied by the school district will remain the same, the state requires the board to advertise the change as a tax increase.

Farnsworth said that’s because the two levies that are affected by the freeze would have seen a decrease in taxes collected this year due to the fact that the certified tax rate would have been lower.

According to Farnsworth, the average residence in Grand County is assessed at approximately $223,000. For a home with that assessed value, the taxes will be $773.06 if the board chooses to adopt the tax freeze. Without freezing the rates, that figure would drop to $759.57, a difference of $13.49.

“If one were to look at their tax bill from last year, you will see no increase as long as the property has not been reassessed,” Webster said.

Grand County School Superintendent Scott Crane invited concerned residents to bring their tax notices by the district office.

The tax rate freeze is not official yet. The board will hold the required Truth in Taxation hearing on Aug.5 at 6 p.m. at the Grand County School District Office located at 264 South 400 East. Members of the public are encouraged to attend the meeting.

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