The St. Paul School District is considering boosting its property-tax levy by up to 4.97 percent in 2017.
The proposal heard by a school board committee Tuesday is the last tax plan to be unveiled by the city’s three major taxing jurisdictions, and it raises the possibility that most homeowners will pay more in property taxes next year.
Ramsey County is eyeing a 2.8 percent increase in its levy, and the city could weigh up to a 7 percent levy hike.
The district’s tax proposal, unlike those presented by the city and the county, does not specify how dollars are spent at the school or program levels. Deliberations on school budgets typically do not begin until the spring.
Facilities costs, including the start of plans for building improvements, would be the main driver in the district’s levy increase.
In September, districts, cities and counties set ceilings for how much they may raise in taxes the following year. Counties then calculate potential tax bills based on those maximum amounts, with the Truth in Taxation estimates sent to property owners in November. Government entities take final action on their respective tax plans later in the year. While they can lower the September figures, they cannot raise them.
A homeowner also can see taxes rise as a result of a change in the home’s market value.
From 2015 to 2016, St. Paul’s median-valued home rose in value by 6.4 percent, from $151,500 to $161,200, according to a Ramsey County assessor’s report. Some neighborhoods, including the Dayton’s Bluff, Frogtown and downtown areas, saw more robust value increases than others.
Before the district’s presentation Tuesday, Chris Samuel, the county’s property records and revenue manager, projected the potential tax bill for a median-valued $161,200 home based on scenarios that included a 7 percent increase in the city levy, a 2.8 percent increase in the county levy and a 6.4 percent market value increase. Under those parameters, with the district’s levy yet to be taken into account, the homeowner would pay an additional 2.2 percent, or $47, in 2017 taxes, his estimates showed.
A 5 percent increase in the school district levy would add $34 to the tax bill for that residence, according to district projections.
The school board will decide next Tuesday on the maximum amount it will consider at year’s end.
The Minneapolis school board’s finance committee is recommending to the full board that the district increase its levy by 3.5 percent in 2017, a $7 million increase. The percentage could fluctuate before next week’s board meeting when the full board will vote, said Ibrahima Diop, the district’s chief financial officer.
He said the levy proceeds will go toward funding to meet goals in the district’s strategic plan.
Staff Writer Beena Raghavendran contributed to this report.