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Letter: Funding system for education needs reform

By Lloyd Robertson, Past District 518 Board of Education member, Worthington With the upcoming referendum on the District 518 bond, we have heard about the need and "how could we say no?" Has anyone talked about the inequity in funding it? Does a...

By Lloyd Robertson, Past District 518 Board of Education member, Worthington   

With the upcoming referendum on the District 518 bond, we have heard about the need and “how could we say no?” Has anyone talked about the inequity in funding it? Does anyone care that it will add greatly to agriculture real estate taxes? Taxes are paid for with profits. Corn is not profitable; soybeans admittedly are better.

 

Ag land of itself does not produce students. Students come from homes. Farmers use their after-tax money to buy their farms, make them profitable, get them paid for and turn them into their retirement plans. In all fairness, shouldn’t we also be taxing 401ks to pay for schools?

 

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Personally, I have land bordering Iowa where the real estate taxes are approximately half of that in Minnesota, and my land is not better.

 

I wonder how thoroughly other options have been explored. Is it not possible to add on to existing buildings? Is there no option to co-operate with neighboring districts? Are there available vacant buildings that could be leased?

 

We all appreciate the fact the students need and deserve a quality education. It needs to be funded fairly. The current system may be legal, but is not right or fair.

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