Planning For the Future
On August 4, 2020, the Morley Stanwood community will have the opportunity to vote on two important proposals - a school bond and an operating millage renewal. These two proposals were approved by the school board and placed on the ballot before we knew the full impact the coronavirus pandemic would have on our schools, our families and our community. While the timing is not ideal, we believe these proposals are critical for the education, health and success of our students and community moving forward.
School Bond Proposal:
If approved, the school bond proposal would provide district-wide improvements to address identified and ongoing facility needs based on detailed strategic planning, facility assessments, and community input. The bond proposal was developed to create safe and modern schools, and address the aging facilities; our school buildings are between 25 and 60 years old. If approved the bond proposal would generate $21 million to complete the district-wide improvements. The estimated impact to property taxes would be 3 mills (the same rate as last year).
Operating Millage Renewal:
If approved, the two-year renewal of the existing school operating millage (18 mills) would continue supporting day-to-day operations, like teachers, support staff and school counselors. Without the operating millage renewal, the district would experience an estimated $10.2 million loss in revenue each year and require significant cuts to programs and services for our students. The non-homestead renewal only applies to rental properties, business properties and vacation homes - homeowner and agricultural property taxes will not be impacted.
What is a bond proposal?
A bond proposal is how a public school district asks its community for authorization to borrow money for capital expenditures by selling bonds.
How can funds from a bond be spent?
Click here to watch the July 7 town hall meeting.
Voter-approved bond funds can be spent on new construction, additions, remodeling, site improvements, athletic facilities, playgrounds, buses, furnishings, equipment, and technology. Funds raised through the sale of bonds cannot be used on operational expenses such as employee salaries and benefits, school supplies, and textbooks. Bond funds must be kept separate from operating funds and must be audited by an independent auditing firm.
What is an operating millage?
On August 4, 2020, the community will be asked to consider voting on the renewal of the operating millage for Morley Stanwood Public Schools. The continuation of this millage on non-homestead properties and businesses accounts for about $1.9 million, or about 18% of the school district’s total general fund. The proposed renewal is to continue to levy the statutory rate of not to exceed 18 mills, which is required for the school district to receive its revenue per pupil foundation allowance.very two years.
What to Expect on the Ballot
MORLEY STANWOOD COMMUNITY SCHOOLS
OPERATING MILLAGE RENEWAL PROPOSAL
This proposal will allow the school district to continue to levy the statutory rate of not to exceed 18 mills on all property, except principal residence and other property exempted by law, required for the school district to receive its revenue per pupil foundation allowance and renews millage that will expire with the 2020 tax levy.
Shall the currently authorized millage rate limitation of 18 mills ($18.00 on each $1,000 of taxable valuation) on the amount of taxes which may be assessed against all property, except principal residence and other property exempted by law, in Morley Stanwood Community Schools, Mecosta, Montcalm and Newaygo Counties, Michigan, be renewed for a period of 3 years, 2021, 2022 and 2023, to provide funds for operating purposes; the estimate of the revenue the school district will collect if the millage is approved and levied in 2021 is approximately $2,126,265 (this is a renewal of millage that will be expire with the 2020 tax levy).
MORLEY STANWOOD COMMUNITY SCHOOLS
Shall Morley Stanwood Community Schools, Mecosta, Montcalm and Newaygo Counties, Michigan, borrow the sum of not to exceed Twenty-One Million Dollars ($21,000,000) and issue its general obligation unlimited tax bonds therefor, in one or more series, for the purpose of:
erecting additions to, remodeling, including security improvements to, furnishing and refurnishing and equipping and re-equipping school buildings; acquiring and installing instructional technology and instructional technology equipment for school buildings; and developing and improving playgrounds, athletic fields and facilities, driveways, parking areas and sites?
The following is for informational purposes only:
The estimated millage that will be levied for the proposed bonds in 2020, under current law, is 3 mills ($3.00 on each $1,000 of taxable valuation). The maximum number of years the bonds of any series may be outstanding, exclusive of any refunding, is twenty-seven (27) years. The estimated simple average annual millage anticipated to be required to retire this bond debt is 2.45 mills ($2.45 on each $1,000 of taxable valuation).
The school district does not expect to borrow from the State to pay debt service on the bonds. The total amount of qualified bonds currently outstanding is $0.00. The total amount of qualified loans currently outstanding is $0.00. The estimated computed millage rate may change based on changes in certain circumstances. (Pursuant to State law, expenditure of bond proceeds must be audited and the proceeds cannot be used for repair or maintenance costs, teacher, administrator or employee salaries, or other operating expenses.)