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Board approves preliminary tax levy with 3.18 percent increase

Aerial view of Kuhlman stadium with water tower in foreground.

The preliminary tax levy for 2018 payable 2019 was approved by the Edina School Board at the Sept. 24 meeting. It represents an increase of 3.18 percent over the previous year for district property owners. Statewide, the Minnesota Department of Education estimates levy increases averaging 6.4 percent.

Included in the district levy certification are voter-approved referendums, which in Edina are the levy, bond and capital technology; levies set by state formula, such as operating capital, and community service; and levies authorized by the state based on local need, including safe schools, career and technical, integration, long term facilities maintenance, and others.

Many factors affect a school district’s levy amount, noted Margo Bauck, director of business services. In Edina, the largest factor this year is a 6.2 percent increase in property market value. This translates to a 1.1 percent increase in the district’s levy. Other factors include legislative formula changes (.2%), enrollment and inflationary changes (.2%), prior year adjustments (1.4%), decrease in long-term facilities maintenance (-.4%), and debt service increase (.7%).

The state will continue to update its formulas and the district may receive new data between now and the final approval of the levy in December. In keeping with past practice, the Board approved the maximum of the proposed levy, with the intent to continue to review levy categories for possible reduction prior to approval in December. Edina residents will receive the final proposal with their November property tax statement.