The recent public opinion research results showed public support to renew Portland's local option levy, following a new state law that would direct all new school levy funds to schools without portions going to urban renewal programs. When removed from urban renewal, the PPS Local Option levy would return an estimated additional $4.5 million per year to the school district.
Renewing the levy would not change the current tax rate for property owners. However, the revenue collected would go entirely to schools instead of a small portion also going to urban renewal.
The board discussion Monday was spurred by passage of HB-2632 during the 2013 Legislative Session.Brought by Rep. Margaret Doherty (D-SW Portland/Tigard) with additional support from Rep. Jules Bailey (D-SE Portland), the bill removes all future local option levies from the division of taxes under urban renewal.
HB 2632 only applies to local option levies approved after January 1, 2013 and first applies to the tax year 2014-15. The current 5-year local option levy was approved by voters in May 2011. If renewed in 2014, the tax rate would remain $1.99 per $1,000 of assessed value yet would stretch through 2019 rather than sunsetting in 2016 as it would now.
Local Option levies pay for school operations - such as teachers' salaries and curriculum. By contrast, school bonds pay for renovating and modernizing school buildings or other capital projects.
DHM Research reviewed survey results with the board that showed 79 percent support to renew Portland's local option levy, if there were no increase in rates and all funds went to schools and not urban renewal.
Co-chair Greg Belisle directed staff to return to the board with recommendations on whether the school board should refer local option levy renewal to voters. A vote could come as early as May 2014.
Additional DHM Research survey results showed:
Share news and events
Email your school or student-related stories and events to be featured online.
The Google translation of this page's content may not be completely accurate.