Whitefish Bay - Whitefish Bay school taxes are projected increase next year, due to a decrease in state aid from Madison.

The Whitefish Bay School District's preliminary 2016-17 budget includes a tax levy increase of 1.7 percent, bringing the levy to $22.39 million. The budget will be presented to the public during the school board's annual meeting and budget hearing at 7 p.m Wednesday, Sept. 7.

The proposed tax rate will increase from $10.70 per $1,000 of valuation to $10.88 per $1,000 of valuation. That means the owner of $350,000 home will pay $3,808 in school taxes - a $63 increase from last year.

Those numbers are dependent upon the amount of aid Whitefish Bay receives from the state. Based on state Department of Public Instruction estimates, Whitefish Bay is budgeting for a $380,127 decrease, a 3.4 percent cut compared to last year.

Last year, Whitefish Bay school officials projected the tax rate would increase from $10.77 per $1,000 of valuation to $10.90 per $1,000 of valuation - but because the budget estimate was based on a 4 percent decrease in statewide school funding that was later restored to a 0 percent decrease - Whitefish Bay ended up receiving more state aid, dropping the tax rate to $10.70 per $1,000 of valuation. That means school taxes dropped $24.50 for the owner of a $350,000 home.

The district's 2016-17 expenditures are increasing $11,000 in the proposed budget. Health insurance costs for the school year are projected to drop 6.5 percent, which is the third year of health insurance cost reductions for Whitefish Bay. The budget also projects a decrease of 53 resident students, due to a large senior class that graduated last year and a smaller incoming freshman class.

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