The Leavenworth USD 453 Board of Education voted 4-3 not to impose a property tax increase on patrons for the 2022-23 school year. The district had been proposing an 8.6% tax hike.
The board did so at its revenue-neutral rate hearing in compliance with the “Truth-in-Taxation” law approved in 2021. The law states any taxing entity, such as a county, city, or school board, proposing to collect more property tax next year than is budgeted for this year must notify taxpayers of that intent, hold a public hearing, and vote to approve the tax hike.
Leavenworth board member Vanessa Reid offered the motion to maintain the district’s “revenue-neutral rate” with no tax increase:
“With housing, automobile, food, and gas prices at all-time highs, the last thing our constituents need to pay is higher taxes. I also want to recognize Superintendent Dr. Roth, supporting staff, and the 3 board members who voted with me – Alisa Murphy, John Goodman, and Michael Powell. We must work as a team to best serve our community.
“The data has well shown that rising costs in education do not always equal a better outcome for students. May we as a district be careful, efficient, and focused on the use of taxpayer dollars to ensure that the students are at grade level or above, that they take pride and fulfill graduation, and that their education is a jumping board from which they can pursue their life dreams.”
State Representative Pat Proctor of Leavenworth applauded the board’s decision:
“Truth in Taxation” only works when people make their voices heard, and we have elected officials with the courage to stand up for them. Tonight we saw this all come together for the people of Leavenworth. I am so proud of our conservative school board members for standing up to the administration last night.”
According to the law, hearings on proposed tax increases must be held between August 20th and September 20th this year.