At the November 16, 2023 Olentangy Schools Board of Education meeting, the board passed legislation asking the County Auditor to decrease the tax rate for 2023 to 6.75 mills, a ¾ mill reduction from 2022.
Delaware County is undergoing a complete property reappraisal in 2023, and the total property values in the District are forecasted to increase by a substantial amount. Due to pending legislation at the state level, property values could increase between 22% - 30% overall in the Olentangy school district, increasing the District valuation to a range between $6.22 - $6.53 billion.
Because of this increase in property valuation, the Board passed legislation asking the County Auditor to reduce the millage, or tax rate, that the Board assesses for payment of its debt service obligations for school facilities it has constructed over the past 15-20 years. In 2022, that tax rate was 7.50 mills. The resolution asks the County Auditor to decrease the tax rate for 2023 to 6.75 mills, a ¾ mill reduction from 2022. This allows the District to still collect between $39.9 million - $41 million to pay its debt service obligations for the year while providing about $4.7 - $4.9 million in total tax relief to residents.
Treasurer Ryan Jenkins stated, “The District will be voluntarily reducing the tax rate for levies assessed for the purpose of paying its debt service. The District is dropping its debt service tax rate from 7.50 mills to 6.75 mills, which is a ¾ mill decrease, to provide immediate tax relief to our residents.”
One question Mr. Jenkins has received is, why would Olentangy Schools roll back ¾ mill of debt service but still ask for a 4.25 mill in March of 2024? Mr. Jenkins explained that, “Schools, by law, must use the funds raised by specific levies for the intended purposes noted on the ballot issue when passed. Debt service millage can only be used to pay debt service, not for the operating expenses or permanent improvements to the District that the March of 2024 levy will fund if passed. By dropping the millage by ¾ mill, Olentangy is giving taxpayers additional tax relief on their 2023 real estate taxes, which will be paid in 2024, instead of simply increasing the balance in our debt service fund.”
For individual homeowners, a reduction of ¾ mill will result in the following tax savings for the 2023 tax year (paid in 2024):