Idaho school administrators have joined state Schools Superintendent Anne Fox in urging the Legislature to raise the state sales tax to address a huge and growing backlog of public school facility needs.
Although the House Revenue and Taxation Committee approved introduction of the latest proposal on Thursday, it probably will not get far.
In fact, property owners got at least a glimmer of hope for lower taxes when a subcommittee approved a bill that would boost the homeowner property tax exemption.
Rep. Golden Linford, R-Rexburg, said he voted to introduce the administrators’ sales tax bill only for discussion.
The Idaho Association of School Administrators and the School Superintendents Association want to raise the sales tax to 5.5 percent. The extra half-cent would generate about $60 million per year.
At least one-third of the new revenue would be dedicated to paying off existing school bonds. The rest could be used for new facilities, remodeling or buying land.