Grayslake Elementary District 46 is expected to collect more tax money from property owners next year, according to the finance boss' presentation to the school board.
Acting Chief School Business Official Chris Bobek reviewed the proposed 2014 tax levy with elected officials at a meeting this week. He said he recommends seeking the maximum tax revenue allowed by law next year.
"We depend on taxes," Bobek said.
Under what is known as the tax cap, school districts are limited to seeking an increase of 5 percent or the rate of inflation -- the consumer price index -- as determined in December 2012, whichever is lower.
While the CPI was at 1.7 percent, school districts often seek more than the capped amount because it does not apply to new properties added to the tax roll. District 46 proposes seeking an allowed maximum 4.7 percent tax levy increase to ensure it receives all possible revenue.
Last year, a different set of District 46 board members voted 5-2 against seeking as much as possible through the 2013 tax levy. More than 40 residents and business owners attended the board meeting the evening of the levy vote in December 2012 and asked the elected officials to hold the line on property taxes.
Tentative projections show an owner of a $150,000 market value home would pay an extra $66.54 in taxes to the district in 2014, Bobek said. The tax hike would be $88.72 for the owner of a $200,000 home.
Bobek said there are several revenue and expenditure concerns looming in a district where the equalized assessed value of property has declined 9 percent. Among them are pending union contract negotiations for teachers and noncertified personnel, a trend of reduced general state aid payments and increased costs due to loans.
"Another big issue coming down the road is pension reform," Bobek told the school board.
Board members will vote on the proposed levy at a meeting in December. District 46 has seven schools and covers parts of Grayslake, Third Lake, Hainesville, Round Lake, Round Lake Park, Round Lake Beach and Lake Villa.