FREEPORT (WIFR) – We could be paying a higher sales tax in Stephenson County if the Freeport School District has its way.
Some board members say the County School Facility tax wouldn’t only raise money for the district, it will also alleviate the stress on those paying property taxes in Freeport. Right now, Freeport pays for repairs, upgrades to schools through property taxes and the referendum would give county voters a chance to decide on an up to 1% sales tax increase to shift the financial burden over to people spending money in the county instead of living in it.
“It’s a way to pay for improvements and renovations to our facilities and also providing some property tax relief,” said Stephanie Helms with the Freeport School District.
“We have a lot of people that are very upset with the high property taxes, this is just one way to kinda counter that,” said Billy Shroyer with District 145.
The law states that districts representing more than half the student population need to ratify the referendum before it can make it onto the ballot. Freeport alone has more than 60% of the population, so if they pass it you’ll likely get a chance to vote on it.
Right now, 18 counties in Illinoi have already adopted the sales tax. The tax would go into effect in April 2015.