Unit 5 is looking at a 14 cent levy increase coming in December, which translates to a $21 increase for a home worth $150,000. (photo by WJBC/Paul Morello)
By Zach Dietmeier
NORMAL - Unit 5's tax increase is still a long way from being realized.
The propety tax base is declining due to falling home values, and Superintendent Gary Niehaus said you can look for a 14 cent increase in December, the majority coming from the mandated debt service which the district doesn't control.
"I think we're in the right place, right time economically in the community," said Niehaus. "I think we are into a little bit of recovery, but we are still probably going to see a zero growth year."
For the owner of a $150,000 home, the levy would amount to $21 more per year. Business Manager Erik Bush says although property values are declining in McLean County, debt payments must be made for new school buildings and renovations.
Drops in home values have Superintendent Gary Niehuas's attention.
"We haven't seen that in a long time," said Niehaus. "It could go more negative, which we hope it doesn't, but it's important for us to get back on our feet with some new construction and to get our current stock of homes sold."
Continued fluctuations and a possible pension shift back onto the district could cause a change in the projections.
Zach can be reached at Zach.Dietmeier@cumulus.com.