Revenue Purpose Statement vote, Sept. 10

~by Tim Christensen, Greene County Schools superintendent

In the spring of 2019, the Iowa Legislature passed and Governor Reynolds signed the extension of the ‘Secure an Advanced Vision for Education” (SAVE) Fund (HF546). This SAVE extension will not be a new tax, but will simply extend the current “One Cent” sales tax that we pay on goods and services. The original fund was set to expire in 2029. The new legislation that passed will extend SAVE through 2050.

As a part of the legislation, in order to spend proceeds beyond the original SAVE legislation (2029), school districts are required to pass a new Revenue Purpose Statement. The Greene County Schools will be requesting the voters of the Greene County School District approve a new Revenue Purpose Statement to allow additional work to be completed on the existing high school that will be converted into the middle school.

The original plan was to borrow $4.5 million against the current SAVE funds that will expire in 2029. $1.5 million of these funds are slated to be spent on converting the building to a middle school. This will include moving the main office to the front of the building in order to create a secure entrance, moving the district office, and remodeling the gym to add bleachers.

The goal of the Greene County School Board would be to spend an additional $3 million on the building to update the heating and cooling, update carpeting, and ceilings. The goal is to prepare the building for another 40 years of use.This additional $3 million would come from proceeds of the SAVE extension.

The Secure an Advanced Vision for Education Fund extension has nothing to do with property tax and does not increase property tax. The SAVE extension does not have anything to do with city local option sales tax initiatives.

Proposed Revenue Purpose Statement

In the Greene County Community School District, the following Revenue Purpose Statement which specifies the use of revenues the Greene County Community School District will receive from the State of Iowa Secure an Advanced Vision for Education Fund shall be adopted.

To provide funds for property tax relief.

To provide funds to acquire or install information technology infrastructure (including improving buildings or sites for the purpose of accessing broadband digital telecommunications) and school safety and security infrastructure.

To provide funds to build and furnish a new school building or buildings to build and furnish addition(s) to school buildings in District, to remodel, reconstruct, repair, expand, and improve the school buildings in the District; to purchase and improve grounds; for demolition work; to furnish and equip district facilities.

To provide funds for the purchase, lease or lease-purchase of buildings, equipment (including transportation and recreation equipment), or technology and to repair transportation equipment for transporting students as authorized by law, to implement energy conservation measures, sharing or rental of facilities including a joint infrastructure project for the purposes of offering classes under a district-to-community college as authorized in Iowa Code Section 423F.3(3)(c), procuring or acquisition of libraries, or opening roads to schoolhouses or buildings.

To provide funds to purchase land as part of start-up costs for new student construction program or if the sale of the previous student construction was insufficient to purchase land, and to purchase construction materials and supplies for a student constructed building or shed intended to be retained by and used by the District. To provide funds to make payments to a municipality or other entity as required under Iowa Code Section 403.19(2).

To provide funds for demolition, cleanup, and other costs if such costs are necessitated by, and incurred within two years of a disaster.

To provide funds to establish and maintain public recreation places and playgrounds; provide for supervision and instruction for recreational activities; or for community education purposes.

To provide funds for the payment of principal and interest or retirement of general obligation bonds issued for school infrastructure purposes, energy improvement loans, loan agreements authorized by Iowa Code Section 297.36, sales, service and use tax revenue bonds issued under Iowa Code Section 423E.5 or Iowa Code Section 423F.4; and

To provide funds for other authorized expenditures and purposes as now or hereafter permitted by law and designated by the Greene County Community School District.

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