YES ON 5A
Yes To Eagle County Schools
Mill Levy Override
What is a Mill Levy Override?
A mill levy override is a voter-approved property tax that provides funds for the school district’s general fund. These funds go to our local schools and not the state. A mill levy override can be used for operational expenses, such as people, programs and services.
The Eagle County School District (ECSD) Board of Education has approved a $3.5 million mill levy override ballot question that will appear on the ballot as question 5A.
What will the Mill Levy Override be used for from ballot question 5A?
Support the district’s commitment to retain and recruit the best and brightest teachers and staff. The funds will ensure the district is able to be competitive in compensation and benefits for teachers and staff.
Enhance the safety and security for schools and classrooms
Provide critical support services, including mental health counseling and intervention specialists. These improve student safety by increasing opportunities for mental health services such as suicide prevention and substance abuse counseling.
Maintain programs including art, music, technology, and physical education supporting vibrant learning experiences, core skills, and language development; improving academic performance opportunities for students.
* MLO sharing per state statute
What is the tax impact?
This year is different! ECSD has an opportunity with voter approval this November 2023, to benefit from Eagle County’s increased assessed property values to fund the mill levy opportunity and finance building employee housing and early childcare education facilities without incrementally adding to property taxes. ECSD does not receive a windfall from increased assessed property values, but will benefit from the overall increase in property tax collections due to the increase in property values.
Because education funding in Colorado is capped by the School Finance Act and its complicated formula, ECSD will reduce its mill levy next year to stay within the requirements of capped funding.
Summary of Written Comments
FOR Ballot Issue No. 5A:
Public education in Colorado has always been underfunded when compared to the rest of the country, and this is not changing anytime soon. To compensate for insufficient funding from the state level, school districts rely on their local communities to provide necessary funding through voter-approved property tax-generated investments in local schools.
The nationwide shortage of qualified teachers has impacted every school district, including the Eagle County School District (ECSD). Retaining and attracting quality teachers and staff is especially challenging for ECSD because of the cost of living and lack of affordable housing. 5A will help ECSD compete for quality teachers and staff by increasing salaries and benefits, enabling the district to retain and recruit the best and brightest teachers and staff.
$3 million of 5A funding will go to increasing teacher and staff salaries to keep ECSD salaries competitive with other school districts across the state and country. Funds from 5A will not be used to increase compensation for senior district administrators. The cost of living in Eagle County makes it difficult for teachers to stay here when other districts in the Front Range are offering higher salaries. ECSD wants to stay in the top 10 of the 178 school districts in Colorado for teacher pay to keep the quality teachers we already have and attract more of the best teachers to our schools.
School safety and security are a key priority, as is providing much needed student mental health services and counseling supports to ensure the success of every child. ECSD is completing an assessment of its safety and security protocols across the district and based on the recommendations of this study, 5A will enhance the safety and security for schools and classrooms.
5A will also provide immense value to students and staff and help address ongoing challenges following the pandemic. Programs and services dedicated to pandemic recovery need additional funding. 5A will provide critical student support services including mental health counseling, suicide prevention programs, and intervention specialists to work with students.
5A will also allow the district to maintain and expand programs including art, music, technology, and physical education improving academic performance opportunities and preparing students for college, entering the workforce, and to be well rounded successful individuals with bright futures.
ECSD has an opportunity to benefit from Eagle County’s increased assessed property values to fund the mill levy opportunity and finance building employee housing and early childcare education facilities without incrementally adding to property taxes. ECSD does not receive a windfall from increased assessed property values but will benefit from the overall increase in property tax collections due to the increase in property values. In fact, because education funding in Colorado is capped by the School Finance Act and its complicated formula, ECSD will need to reduce its mill levy next year by 2 mills to stay within the requirements of capped funding. Voter approval of both 5A and 5B does not create an increase in the total mill levy paid to ECSD.
No Comments were filed by the constitutional deadline AGAINST Ballot Issue No. 5A.
For the full official Eagle County Ballot Issue Notice Blue Book writeup on 5A, click here.
To view the entire official 2023 election booklet here.