Taxes needed to fund achievements

Dear Editor,

The Shelby County Board of Education will hold an election on February 8, 2011 to renew 30 mills of existing ad-valorem taxes. These taxes are set to expire in six more years. This is not a tax increase. It means that property owners will continue to pay the same amount of taxes they are now paying.

Extension of this tax will allow the Shelby County School District to secure new bonds that will finance new schools, classrooms and renovations for the next thirty years.

Since six years are left on the existing property taxes, the school district is unable to secure additional bonds for new construction until the taxes are renewed.

The Shelby County School District has an enrollment of approximately 28,000 students, the fourth-largest in the state.

The system continues to expand with approximately 500 new students added to the school population each year. To keep pace with this rapid growth new schools or school expansions are constantly needed.

This revenue helps fund art, music, physical education, technology and gifted education programs. It also assists in paying assistant principals, additional core subject teachers, health room nurses, guidance counselors and instructional support staff.

I am proud of the Shelby County School System and its achievements. I ask the citizens of this county to vote yes on February 8, 2011 and renew this tax for our children’s future.

Beverly S. Hall
Columbiana