Non-homestead millage goes to a vote

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By Haley Kluge
The Holt Journal

On May 5, voters will decide the fate of Holt Public School District’s recent millage proposal, which would increase taxes for non-homestead properties.

Affected properties include businesses, some vacant lots, vacation homes and commercial or industrialized properties. Those properties’ taxes would increase approximately .68 of a mill, or 68 cents for each $1,000 taxable value of a property, according to Holt Schools’ official fact sheet.

A business worth $100,000 would pay an increase of $68 this year.

Millage

“We’ve looked at our budget implications since 2004, and there are revenues that we don’t collect,” Superintendent Dr. Johnny Scott said. “It’s going to continue to do that; we’re looking at the efficiency and organization of finances. We have to be more conscious of how dollars are being spent and where they are being spent at.”

The millage would allow the school district to collect 18 mills, which would be a restoration of the levy of 1997. It would be in place for 10 years.

“It should be a grand slam,” Holt mother Amy Dalton said. “It shouldn’t be as complicated as people are making it. I think some people just think ‘no more taxes’ and they don’t look beyond that.”

The side effects of other ballot items are also a concern.

“We’re on the ballot with the road proposal,” said Deputy Superintendent of Human Resources and Legal Services Scott Szpara. “We hope that people don’t take the negativity from that and take it out on this.”

Scott foresees most support from parents and families in the community, as their taxes will not be affected.

“What we try and do is get it out to parents first, then next wave is looking at the service clubs and then see what happens and the response we get,” he said.

With potential opposition, Holt Schools has already begun promoting the millage at PTO meetings. After spring break, the district plans to continue with community service and business alliance groups.

“It’s a different audience,” Scott said. “We know this is going to be interesting.”

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