The Batavia School Board didn’t understand the message behind the overwhelming NO vote on the referendum. On Thursday, Nov. 13, the Finance Committee passed to the full board, for discussion and approval, a levy that increases taxes to the maximum amount allowed by law, limited only by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) of an estimated 1.5% this year. By their calculations, that would increase the property taxes on the average home ($244,000) by $38.
At the meeting, board member Gregg Hodge noted that last year while they promised the average home would see their taxes go down $28, his went UP by $300. That’s because some people’s homes lost more value than others, and those who lost the least saw their taxes go up the most. But it’s probably safe to say that as long as they keep raising the levy, more people will see their taxes go up, many significantly so.
Why do they think the referendum lost? The board seems to think it was mostly because the voters were philosophically “uncomfortable” with more debt (see the video of the meeting, starting at 33:30). They can’t seem to understand that more debt = more taxes, and Batavia school district taxpayers have had their taxes raised so high that they don’t want any more, especially for items deemed non-essential to education. Please do them a favor, and if you voted against the referendum, click on the bps101 School Board “Contact” button on the right side of this page, and tell them in detail why.
The full board will meet on Tuesday, Nov. 18, 7 pm. They will likely approve the tax increase, as they’ve all (except maybe Jon Gaspar) bought into the groupthink common to many IL school boards that they have to capture all they’re “entitled” to every year. $6 million a year in money from the Chicago Premium Outlets Mall was and is not enough for them. They want more from your pocket. Speak now via their contact page or Tuesday night during public comments, and ask them to, if they won’t lower the levy, at the very least, freeze it at last year’s level.