• Please prevent more increases
    July 15,2013
     

    Please prevent more increases

    Your July 6 article about the recommended tax rates that were later approved by the Montpelier City Council on July 10 contained encouraging news about an increase in the grand list helping to keep the municipal tax rate increase to just 0.5 percent. I believe the small increase is also the result of prudent budget decisions made by the City Council.

    On the other hand, the rate for the school tax, which makes up the majority of our property tax bills, is rising 9.4 percent, and we have been told to expect a similar school tax increase next year. If the school tax keeps increasing at this rate, our school tax bills will double in eight years. That seems to me to be an unsustainable rate of increase.

    I have long supported quality education in Montpelier, and I know part of the problem is a statewide property tax system in which the state’s general fund contribution to education has declined as a percentage of all education spending, putting more of a burden on the property tax.

    But according to your article, Montpelier’s per pupil spending rose from $17 above the state average last year to $330 above the state average for the coming school year. I urge the Montpelier School Board to do whatever it can to prevent a similar increase in its next school budget.

    Phil Dodd

    Montpelier

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