Most Illinois School Districts Could Lose Funding Next Year

By: WIFR Newsroom, Lauren Kravets
By: WIFR Newsroom, Lauren Kravets

UPDATE: ILLINOIS (WIFR) – Many of Illinois’ 860 public school districts will lose funding next year, if the state’s temporary income tax increase expires.

That’s according to Senate democrats. Schools would lose about $450 million total.

Rockford Public Schools would lose more than $3 million in the 2015 fiscal year. Superintendent Dr. Ehren Jarrett says that would be a major hit since the district is still only collecting property taxes at 2007 levels.

"We would probably have to look at a pretty significant reserve pledge for the first year, depending on whatever the shortfall is and then as we build the FY16 budget, we would have to take into account those new realities and try to minimize the impact on students," says Jarrett.

The Belvidere school district would lose nearly $1.7 million, Freeport $1.2 million, Rochelle $615,000, and Dixon would see about $276,000 in cuts.

Senator Dave Syverson says he's not sure a vote on this tax hike will happen before the budget is passed on May 31st. The problem with that is, the current budget is based on keeping the tax hike. So if the tax increase doesn't pass, then they'll be cutting programs because there won't be this promised money in the budget.

The income tax hike expires December 31st. Syverson doesn't think a vote will be taken until after the November election. He says gubernatorial candidates could use it as a campaigning tool.

For a complete list of how not extending the temporary income tax increase would affect the schools in our area, please see the attached related document. For the entire list for all public schools in the state, please click on the related link.

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