Orange County NC Website
1 <br /> ORANGE COUNTY <br /> BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS <br /> ACTION AGENDA ITEM ABSTRACT <br /> Meeting Date: April 23, 2020 <br /> Action Agenda <br /> Item No. 4 <br /> SUBJECT: School Funding Equity between School Districts in Orange County <br /> DEPARTMENT: County Manager's Office <br /> ATTACHMENT(S): INFORMATION CONTACT: <br /> A. Statewide Table of County and District Tax Travis Myren, 919-245-2308 <br /> Information <br /> PURPOSE: To discuss school funding equity between the two School Districts in Orange <br /> County. <br /> BACKGROUND: This agenda item is in response to a petition by a Board member. In North <br /> Carolina, each county is responsible for supplementing state and federal appropriations to <br /> public education. State law requires the County to allocate current expense or operating funding <br /> to each school system based on an equal per pupil amount. In addition to current expense <br /> funding, counties provide funds to each system for recurring and long range capital projects. <br /> These capital expenses are not required to be allocated on a per pupil basis. <br /> The FY2019-20 budget provides $4,352.25 per student for each of the 20,408 students in the <br /> two school systems. The Chapel Hill Carrboro City Schools District was allocated approximately <br /> $53.4 million in current expense funding based on an enrollment of 12,274 students. The <br /> Orange County Schools District was allocated approximately $35.4 million in current expense <br /> funding based on an enrollment of 8,134 students. <br /> State law also allows Local Education Agencies (LEA) to levy special district taxes. District taxes <br /> must be approved by referendum. Once the tax is approved, the Board of County <br /> Commissioners formally approves the special district tax rate each year. Attachment A shows <br /> the counties in the state that levy taxes for more than one school district and the special district <br /> tax rates, if any, authorized in each of those Districts. The most recent data available from the <br /> Department of Public Instruction is from 2017-18. <br /> The Special District Taxes are only levied within the District's boundary. In FY2019-20, Chapel <br /> Hill Carrboro City Schools maintained a special district tax rate of 20.18 cents per $100 <br /> assessed value. For this fiscal year, the special district tax is estimated to generate an additional <br /> $1,977 per student or a total of $24,267,972. This additional per pupil funding increases per <br /> pupil resources in the Chapel Hill Carrboro City Schools District to a total of$6,329.25. <br /> Based on the requirements of State law, the County cannot equalize the total per pupil amount <br /> since it must provide the same per pupil funding for current expenses to each district. At this <br /> time, the County does not have a way to equalize the total per pupil funding unless each district <br /> authorizes the same special district tax or the existing special district tax is eliminated. <br />