Sunday, February 18, 2007

How To Educate Kids And Not Pay School Taxes

Californians might not get this, as our schools are funded by the state and not local property taxes. I hesitate to imagine the disparities that come with funding solely from local property taxes. But here's an interesting disparity, brought to us from the New York Times via NewsAlert (see blogroll at left):

So when it came time last November for the expanding, unincorporated desert community of Troon to choose between joining a nearby school district, and paying higher property taxes to help finance it, or starting its own, Mr. Flynn led the movement that created the Christopher Verde School District.

Not that the Christopher Verde district will have any schools, teachers or, apparently, students.

The children of Troon will continue to attend nearby schools. And thanks to a loophole in Arizona law, the grown-ups of Troon will continue to avoid paying property taxes in those districts, which makes officials in the districts less than mirthful.

Oddly enough, none of my current labels accurately describes this, so until I change that, this will get filed under miscellaneous.


Anonymous said...

Prior to the passage of proposition 13 in California, schools were funded more directly from local property taxes:

Darren said...

True, but Prop 13 was passed almost 30 years ago. There's no institutional memory left about running districts that way.

Jason said...

Actually, this doesn't sound so bad after reading the article: the students get their free public education at their choice of schools, and the Troon "school district" pays tuition to the school they join, so nobody's getting shafted here as far as I can tell. Naturally, I'm sure the neighboring districts would like free money from people with large homes and no kids, but I don't see that they're *entitled* to it. (Maybe out-of-district tuition is too low or something, but that's a separate issue.)

Actually, it strikes me as one implementation of a GOOD idea: tying the funding to the students.

(The real loophole, of course, is the one Arizona abolished already: students in unincorporated areas got to go to school without paying school taxes.)