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July 12,  2011

Brandywine school tax rate
given a modest increase

The Brandywine school board set a tax rate of $1.8385 for each $100 of assessed property value for this fiscal year, up 2.2 from last year.

The increase was in the debt-service component of the rate. Financial officer David Blowman said it was needed to pay interest and principle on state bonds sold recently to finance the third and final phase of the district's renovation program. "This is the high-water mark," he said, explaining that the debt-service rate will decrease in future years as bonds are retired.

He noted that the peak was 6 less than was predicted at the time of the last capital referendum. That, he said, was the result of the decision to tear down rather than renovate the former Hanby Middle School and lower-than-expected interest rates on the bonds.

This is the fifth year in which the operating-expense component has remained within the limit set at the last referendum. Blowman said it is too early to tell whether there has to be a referendum in 2012.

The overall tax rate will bring in about $44 million, Blowman said.

The board agreed unanimously on the new rate without any discussion at its meeting on July 11. The tax is due to be paid by the end of September.

 

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