September 8, 2012 (Independence, IA) –The Independence Community School District would like to remind district voters of the PPEL (Physical Plant and Equipment Levy) vote on Tuesday, September 11th. Voters will be asked to vote on the renewal of the PPEL program which allows school districts across Iowa to collect revenue for specific uses within their districts.
ICSD has used PPEL funds for a variety of maintenance items over the last 10 years. Some of these projects include;
- Repair roofs, playgrounds, and sidewalks;
- Purchase transportation vehicles like buses and vans;
- Purchase musical instruments for our band program;
- Support classroom technology; and more.
While it is possible to use PPEL funds in the construction of new facilities, ICSD did not use them to build the Early Childhood Education Center and is not using them to build the new Jr./Sr. High School.
“It’s important for us to plan accordingly to not only build top‐notch facilities, but also to keep all of our buildings in good condition with a long‐term maintenance plan. We count on PPEL funds to help us provide good learning environments for our students”, said Superintendent Russell Reiter.
Early voting has already started at the Buchanan County Auditor’s Office. If you plan to vote on September 11th, polling locations will be held in Independence at Heartland Acres, in Rowley at the Community Center, and in Brandon at the Community Center. Please note the special poll hours of Noon to 8:00pm.
Renewal of this levy will not increase your property taxes. The district is asking for approval to continue the voter‐approved rate that has been in effect for the past 10 so that we may continue to use the funding in our maintenance and upgrades plan. The current rate is $0.40 per $1,000 of assessed property valuation. This rate is well below the maximum allowable voter‐approved rate of $1.34 per $1,000. The district wants to keep the rate at the $0.40 level for the next 10 years. Nearly all Districts in the state of Iowa utilize the PPEL levy as a way to ensure funding for maintenance of current assets.
The maximum length of the voter‐approved PPEL program is 10 years. The current levy expires June 30, 2013. Our district voter‐approved PPEL program provided approximately $150,000 per year for the past 10 years and helped to purchase electrical upgrades, teacher computers, musical instruments, and buses.
More PPEL Information can be found on the district’s website at www.indee.k12.ia.us/ppel‐information. You may also contact Superintendent Peterson with any questions at (319) 334‐7400.
Jenny Yoder, Fusion Forward