Saying enrollment is up, the Coeur d’Alene School District passed an emergency levy Friday that will cost the average taxpayer an extra $9.72 a year.
In a 3-to-1 vote, school board members approved spending an extra $412,356.30, after learning that average daily attendance is up about 200 from last year.
Only trustee Wanda Quinn voted against the measure.
“My issue was simply to try not to see the taxes increase any more,” Quinn said. “It’s not that I disagreed with the need, but I was trying to hold the line.”
State law allows districts to collect additional taxes without a public vote if school enrollment rises over the previous year.
“We expected more students, but this levy is based on growth,” said Assistant Superintendent Dave Teater.
The board could have levied up to $607,000.
For average homeowners with property values of $110,000 with a $30,000 lot and a homeowners exemption, the new levy will add 81 cents per month in taxes. The levy works out to about 13.9 cents per $1,000 in taxable value.
The greatest single share of the money - about $150,000 - will be used to purchase land. Another $141,100 will be used to hire two full-time teachers and two part-time teachers’ aides.
While the teachers will be hired immediately, the land likely will be bought later.
“These students will cause some additional space crowding issues,” Teater said. “Sometimes it takes more than a year to find the land.”
Other money will be used to buy textbooks, desks and chairs and printing equipment.
About $24,000 will be used to buy vehicles, and $19,000 will go toward ovens and freezers for school kitchens.
“Because you have more students, each one of those things are costs that the district will incur due to growth,” Teater said.