District 3 approves increased levy

FOX RIVER GROVE – School District 3 residents can expect to pay more toward the school system next year.

The District 3 school board on Monday approved its 2012 property tax levy – request of $5.276 million, or a 5.07 percent increase from the previous year.

However, under the tax cap law, the school district’s increase is limited to 5 percent or the rate of inflation, whichever is less. This year, rate is set at 3 percent based on the consumer price index.

Taxing bodies, though, generally balloon their levy to ensure they capture any property growth, in the form of either construction or improvements.

The school district expects to bring in about $146,000 more in property taxes next year and estimates the owner of a $250,000 house will pay $112 more in property taxes toward the school district.

Property-tax rates won’t be set until the spring, when property values are finalized. Property values in the school district are estimated to drop 10 percent next year, Superintendent Tim Mahaffy wrote in an email to the Northwest Herald.

Property taxes account for 83 percent of the school district’s revenue.

“The loss of general state aid ... has created an annual $400,000 revenue shortfall as it was decreased from 2009 through 2011,” Mahaffy wrote. “I believe our school district and Board of Education continue to be responsible stewards with local funds in continuing to provide an excellent education for the students and future of Fox River Grove. Our board also indicated that possible abatements in the future would be discussed as we get a better picture of future state and federal revenue sources.”

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