We’ve covered the basic and special education line items, and we’ve discussed the costs that drive school district budgets. Since the state and federal funding provide only a fraction of the total expenditures in most school districts, school districts must raise revenue locally to balance their budgets and ensure that schools have the basic resources needed.
In most school districts, the bulk of this additional revenue comes in the form of property taxes, with property taxes making up nearly 42% of total school district revenue statewide. In addition to property taxes, many school districts levy and collect an earned income tax (EIT), which accounted for about 5% of total school district revenue in 2018-19.
In addition to property taxes and EIT, many school districts also levy and collect several other local taxes (such as a business privilege tax, occupation assessment tax, per capita tax, cigarette tax, etc.). These other local taxes accounted for about 7% of total school district revenue in 2018-19.
With the annual increase in mandated costs, the reliance on local revenue is a necessity when building school district budgets. The extent of that reliance and the precise makeup of local revenue is unique to each school district.
Click on the infogram below to view the statewide change in local revenue (from all local sources) to state and federal revenue over the past several years.
Click on the infogram below to view the statewide change in the median local revenue (from all local sources) per student over the past several years.
Click on the map below to view the local revenue (from all local sources) per student in each school district. Please note that this number does not represent the total school district spending per student, but instead the extent to which a school district must raise local revenue. The variance across the state highlights those school districts that are most reliant on local revenue, or conversely, the school districts that receive the lowest shares of state and federal funding.