West Bloomfield, Sylvan Lake Taxpayers May Avoid Pontiac School Levy
The Pontiac School District is looking to borrow $8 million to pay unpaid teacher premiums and avoid taxing the residents in the district's eight communities, including West Bloomfield and Sylvan Lake.
West Bloomfield taxpayers may be able to escape a tax levy that could be used to pay off millions of dollars worth of unpaid teacher health premiums at Pontiac Schools.
But that's only if the Pontiac School District can get a $8 million loan to pay off the debt first.
According to a report in the Oakland Press, Pontiac Schools Superintendent Brian Dougherty said the district is considering taking out a loan and pay off a $7.8 million debt before a 3 mill tax levy is placed on residents' summer tax bills.
West Bloomfield is one of eight communities that make up the Pontiac School District, along with Bloomfield Township, Orion Township, Waterford Township, Aurburn Hills, Lake Angeles and Sylvan Lake. If the tax goes through, nearly 37,000 residential and commercial properties would be taxed.
"The Pontiac city school district is at the present time seriously considering the use of its tax anticipation note to offset the total amount of the judgement levy," Dougherty said in a statement issued by the district last week.
He is referring to the $7.8 million consent judgement entered against Pontiac Schools on Jan. 18 on behalf of the Michigan Education Special Services Association. According to the court order, the entire amount must be paid off in the summer tax bill.
"We are in the process of re-examining the cash flow projection for the remainder of the 2012-13 school year as well as the 2013-14 school year to determine the viability of this possible solution," Dougherty added.
"I don't think the average taxpayer even knows about this," William Hampton, an attorney representing Auburn Hills and West Bloomfield, told the Oakland Press in late February, noting that residents have until the July 1 summer tax deadline to challenge the school district judgement.
The Pontiac Board of Education will next meet on March 18, during which they'll review the proposal and other cash-saving plans. According to the Oakland Press, the district can borrow up to 50 percent of its anticipated tax revenue.