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Funding for county’s schools is investment in future of our youth

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By The Staff

As superintendent of Carroll County Schools, I would like to thank the community for your financial support of the children of Carroll County Schools. 

Your hard-earned taxpayer dollars are allowing us to renovate Cartmell Elementary this year, and add early childhood classrooms at Kathryn Winn Primary next year. Those funds have also helped us to purchase a new literacy curriculum called Literacy by Design, which includes new classroom materials that will strengthen the reading and writing skills of our children in kindergarten through fifth grade. These construction projects and educational improvements provide an enriched 21st Century learning environment for the children of Carroll County now and for years to come.

The proposed 4 percent increase in property taxes that we are requesting is needed to keep up with the ever-increasing expenses of providing a quality education for our children. 

Local financial support has become essential as the state legislature has cut funding to schools while our operating expenses continue to rise. For example, the state reduced funding for the reading program at Winn Primary by $30,000. 

The cost of new school buses has increased by $15,000 per bus since 2006. In addition, the costs of operating our fleet of buses have increased. Also, local school districts are now required to pay a larger percentage of health care costs of our employees.

These are just a few examples of increasing operational costs of the Carroll County School District. 

In order to continue providing the quality education that the children of Carroll County receive, your support is crucial to their success. Like the majority of Kentucky School Districts, the Carroll County Board of Education approved tax rates that generated 4 percent more in revenue from real estate and personal property than was received in the previous year, as allowed by Kentucky Revised Statute.

The proposed 4 percent increase means that a Carroll County property owner with $100,000 in real estate or personal property will pay an additional $21 in taxes next year. While $21 amounts to a little over a nickel a day, every family can put $21 to good use, especially in difficult economic times.

That being said, over the past several years, we in Carroll County have maintained significantly lower tax rates than in the surrounding counties of Gallatin, Owen, Henry and Trimble counties. For example, on a $100,000 home, our neighbors pay between $48 and $121 more every year than we do.

The decisions we make today will impact our children and grandchildren now and in the future. An investment in their education now will pay great dividends in the future as Carroll County continues to prosper and thrive in the 21st Century. We do not take lightly the sacrifices our community has made through the years to provide our children with the tools they need for a successful future. 

Thanks, again, for being champions for our greatest asset, the children of Carroll County.

 

Lisa James is superintendent of Carroll County Schools.