Tax Study Commission


          The Grove City Area School Board is required by state law to place a referendum question on next year’s primary ballot.  The question must ask the voters to approve or disapprove raising income taxes to replace property taxes on a dollar for dollar basis.  If the referendum is approved people who own their own homes will receive a homestead/farmstead exclusion for part of their property taxes.  Income taxes would then be raised to cover the loss of those property taxes.  If the referendum is not approved, the current tax structures will remain in place.


            The tax shifting, if it occurs, will create both winners and losers.  People with little or no income who own their own homes will gain the most.  People who have income but don’t own their homes will lose the most.  People who own their homes and have $50,000 to $70,000 in family yearly income will see little effect either way.


            In order to help the school board choose from among the three referendum options required by state law, the board has appointed a tax study commission from those who volunteered.  Dr. Michael Coulter is the chairperson.  Other members include Michael Cooney, Charles Fry, George Hagstrom, Robert McBryan, James Nelson and Jane Rath.  This Tax Study Commission will present its recommendation to the school board on December 11, 2006.


            The commission met on two occasions to review financial and demographic information.  Members discussed the different effects of an earned income tax and a personal income tax. They studied the historic and present district revenue from current taxes, percentage of district revenues provided by current taxes; age, income, employment and property use characteristics of the district tax base and projected district revenue from current taxes and from the possible new or additional Act 1 Earned Income Tax or Personal Income Tax at various levels.  They also discussed slot money considerations and the long term and short term impact of each of the referendum options.