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Wyoming, Kent City asking voters for tax approvals Tuesday

Requests would not raise existing millage rates

Wyoming, Kent City – Voters in both districts will be asked to approve tax requests in the Tuesday, May 3 election. In Wyoming, it’s a $24.9 million bond to pay for renovating Wyoming Junior High, while Kent City voters will be asked to renew the non-homestead operating millage and an existing sinking fund for ongoing facility maintenance and site improvements. Neither request would raise current tax rates in either district. 

Here’s a closer look at the two requests:

Wyoming Public Schools 

Request: The district is asking for $24.9 million to renovate Wyoming Junior High to look like the new Wyoming High School building. Officials say the new high school opened in 2020 has enhanced students’ education experience and they want to replicate that with improvements to the aging junior high, including construction of a two-story addition. Approval would add to about $11 million in renovations already earmarked by the district’s $79.5 million bond issue in 2017. The ballot language is broad, enabling the district to fund other projects if the junior high project doesn’t cost as much as projected. 

Cost: The debt millage would remain at the same 5.65 mills it has been since 2016, because growth in district property values doesn’t require raising the rate.

Details: District information page

Story: Bond would fund rebuild of junior high to mirror high school

Kent City Community Schools 

Request: The district is asking voters for five-year renewals of its non-homestead operating fund and its sinking fund, which both expire this year. The 17.7881-mill operating millage is levied only on businesses, commercial and investment properties, vacation homes and rental properties, not principal residences. It is expected to bring in about $609,355 in revenue in 2023, or about 4 percent of the district’s budget. The 0.9783-mill sinking fund is expected to raise about $242,911 in 2023 for building-related expenses, such as boiler work and resurfacing floors. 

Cost: For the non-homestead operating millage, the owner of a non-homestead property valued at $100,000 pays $1,780 in taxes. For the sinking fund, taxes cost about $98 on property including primary residences worth $100,000. As renewals, neither request would raise the tax rate. 

Details: District information page

Story: Operating, sinking fund renewals on May 3 ballot

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Charles Honey
Charles Honey is editor-in-chief of SNN, and covers series and issues stories for all districts. As a reporter for The Grand Rapids Press/mLive from 1985 to 2009, his beats included Grand Rapids Public Schools, local colleges and education issues. Honey served as editor of The Press’ award-winning Religion section for 15 years and its columnist for 20. His freelance articles have appeared in Christianity Today, Religion News Service and Faith & Leadership magazine. Read Charles' full bio

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