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Willmar School Board adopts $8.1M levy for 2019

Briana Sanchez / Tribune file photo The Willmar School Board on Monday adopted the $8.1 million preliminary to the 2019-20 school year. The district will have a Truth in Taxation hearing to discuss the final levy at 6 p.m. Dec. 10.

WILLMAR — A preliminary 2019 property tax levy for Willmar Public Schools indicates that the $8 million levy is likely to change little.

The Willmar School Board adopted the preliminary levy Monday, which will be paid in 2019 and fund the 2019-20 school year. The levy is set by the Minnesota Department of Education.

The final levy will be adopted in December. The board adopted the maximum preliminary levy allowed by the state Monday, as recommended by Business and Finance Director Pam Harrington.

The maximum is recommended, because the levy is allowed to be decreased but not increased when it's adopted in December. Harrington said board members could expect to see the levy numbers change little before final adoption.

The only way to increase a levy beyond what the state has approved is through the will of the voters. This fall, district residents will vote on a $45.10-per-pupil operating levy, which would raise $225,000 a year.

The district will have a Truth in Taxation hearing to discuss the final levy at 6 p.m. Dec. 10.

The $8.1 million preliminary levy is about $37,000 less than the levy being paid this year. If the operating levy is adopted, the final levy would be higher. It is part of a general fund budget of about $55 million.

Property tax bills include county taxes, city or township taxes and school taxes. Statements using the preliminary levies will be sent by county auditors in November.

The levy includes $3.9 million in general fund funding, $383,000 for community education and $3.8 million to make payments on the district's bond approved in a 2015 referendum.

Linda Vanderwerf

I cover education issues for the West Central Tribune and have worked for the paper since 1995. I have worked in journalism since 1981.

Follow me on Twitter: @lindavanderwerf

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