Equalization of School Capital Funding

by Senator Mike Dmitrich
Senate Minority Leader

Senator Mike DmitrichIn the past general election, east side Salt Lake County voters approved the split of Jordan School District, the largest school district in the state. The district split created capital outlay inequities among school districts, some experiencing increasing enrollment and others decreasing enrollment, resulting in greater or lesser needs for school buildings. Last year, I served on the Equalization Task Force, the objective of which was to design a fair method of equalizing the statewide financial burden of constructing school buildings. Senate Bill 48 emerged from the Task Force, and we support this proposal as a viable plan.

The bill, now SB 48, Second Substitute, “Equalization of School Capital Outlay Funding” (Sen. Dan Eastman), increases by $28.5 million the ongoing funding to the Capital Outlay Foundation Program, which provides state funding to school districts that receive less property tax revenues per pupil due to their smaller property tax base per pupil. The bill also increases the combined capital-related property tax rates a school district must impose to receive full funding from .0024 to .0030 and allows for proportional funding if a district imposes a rate below .0030.

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