Baltimore Voted Against House Bill on One-Cent Sales Tax for Schools

April 19, 2018 5:28 am

rep_BaltimoreThe Iowa House recently passed a bill to help extend the sunset date on the one-cent sales tax for public school districts.

District 47 Representative Chip Baltimore says the House passed the extension of the Secure an Advanced Vision for Education (SAVE) one-cent sales tax to the year of 2049. It was scheduled to expire in 2029. Baltimore adds that the one-cent sales tax for schools are used to pay back bond issues and school districts were going to find it difficult to do any kind of future bonding if that funding stream is suppose to expire. A couple of changes that the House bills proposes was to use the sales tax for property relief for poorer districts and give voters the right to vote on projects they think the sales tax should be used on.

Baltimore says the bill passed 95 to three and he was one of the lawmakers that opposed the bill. While he supports the one-cent sales tax, Baltimore points out it’s unfair to allocate those funds equally to school districts, especially ones that are in, what Baltimore called, “property rich” environments in which they don’t have to tap into SAVE funds to pass a bond referendum for a new building.

“So I would rather see more of the state one-cent sales tax money going to projects like Greene County’s. Increase the allocation that goes to that so that there’s less of an impact on the Grow Greene County fund, and there’s less of an impact on Greene County as a whole. Make it a fairer playing field for school districts around the state to try and build top-notch facilities for their students.”

Baltimore says the bill is now in the Senate for consideration. However, if the measure fails to get passed before the end of the legislative session, Baltimore notes it will have to be brought back as a completely new bill for next year.

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