In 2019 the Cuyahoga Falls community passed a 9.83-mill tax issue that included a 5.33-mill, 36-year bond issue for the construction of the brand new 6-12 campus. This bond would generate $80.6 million representing the locally funded portion of the building, with the state accounting for $33.2 million. Totaling the project cost at $113.8 million.
The initial tax rates for property owners were based on estimated numbers at the time of the levy, which predicted homeowners with a home value of $100,000 would pay $186.55 annually toward this bond issue.
This spring (May 2021), when the bonds were sold and the final rates were set, it was determined that taxpayers would save 36.5% on the total amount paid over the terms of the bond. Which means, a homeowner with an appraised value of $100,000 would pay annually $162.75 versus the initially expected $186.55.
There are a couple factors that played into bond savings including the increase in tax valuation for the district and a lower interest rate than initially expected.
In 2020, Summit County performed a reappraisal of real property that in turn increased the district’s valuation by 13.76% and lowered the total millage of the bond. The school district had also expected to pay an interest rate of 4.5%; however, the rate was set at an average of 2.72%.
Another factor in the bond savings is from the proceeds collected in the 2020 tax year. Those proceeds are kept in a separate bond retirement fund that’s sole purpose is to pay back the bond debt. Additionally, the district received $5,147,135 in additional proceeds from the sale of the bonds. These two amounts combined will allow for higher initial payments on the principal amount.
School funding, taxes and finance can get confusing, but we are happy to report this positive cost savings to our community!