Most of our homeowners will see an increase in their property tax rates this year. Below is a list of frequently asked questions that will explain why this increase took place. You can also find more information in two Yuma Sun articles dated August 16, 2010, and October 13, 2011. As always, if you have any questions, you can contact our district office directly.
Why did my property taxes go up?
- Assessed valuation of properties across the County went down. When there is less valuation of the properties, the County has to charge a higher tax rate. The debt cannot be spread over as many dollars or taxpayers. The same amount of debt is spread over a smaller amount of valuation.
- The Arizona Legislature raised the qualifying tax rate in the Spring in order to balance the state budget and pass the costs of schools back to the local taxpayers.
Why do the different school districts have different tax rates?
- The main difference is that each school district includes different boundaries and different assessed valuation of all of the property in the district, which in turn affects the school district tax rate. YUHSD includes larger boundaries than any other school district in Yuma County. YUHSD also had the largest decrease in property devaluation, even though it is18 months behind.
- Each school district has a different history of voter initiatives that have been approved in the past and construct their specific budgets to meet their unique needs within the state budget limits.
- Charter schools are not taxing authorities, so their funding comes directly from
the state general fund.
What are the YUHSD Property Tax Rates this year compared to past years?
|OP & Main
- The total tax rate from 2007 to 2012 decreased by 0.0098.
- The total tax rate from 2011 to 2012 increased by 0.9137.
How did the Assessed Valuation compare from last year to this year for Yuma Union High School District?
How and when are the tax rates calculated?
- The ADM is determined by the 100th day calculations for the previous school year. The 100th day is at the end of January, but the state does not finalize the number until September.
- The Arizona Legislature passes their budget anywhere between April and the end of June. Their budget determines the per pupil formula on which the school district budget is set.
- The Yuma County Assessor determines the assessed valuation of all properties in the school district. If the assessed valuation goes down from the previous year, the tax rate goes up to make up for the reduction in valuation. The school districts are only allowed to carry over a small percentage of funds from the previous year. If they have more than 4% carryover, the extra funds are returned to the state treasury.
- The County receives information about the State-allocated funds for the new fiscal year, subtracts any remaining balance (carryover) from the previous year, and determines the amount of taxes that need to be generated for the school district based on the budget limit set by the state. This is generally completed by mid-August and the tax rates are submitted to the County Supervisors for
What does Yuma Union control about the tax rate?
- The District has the authority to raise its primary property taxes to generate funds in Adjacent Ways by asking the Governing Board to approve the tax increase. Yuma Union Governing Board approved the increase in July. The Governing Board action must take place as part of the Budget Adoption process, which is mandated to be completed by July 15 each year, before the tax rates are set and the valuations and other variables are completed and known. This year, when the district received updated information on the assessed valuation for property in our district and the tax rate recommended by the County to adjust for the decrease in valuation, YUHSD chose NOT to increase the tax rate, but to eliminate the tax rate for Adjacent Ways for FY2012.
- The District has some latitude to carry over funds from one fiscal year to the next, up to the limit of 4% imposed by law. YUHSD exercises that control.
What is out of Yuma Union’s control about the tax rate?
- The District has no control over the assessment of valuation of property in the District boundaries.
- The District has no control over the actions of the State Legislature including their ability to increase the qualifying tax rate or pass the costs of education, including deferred payments, to local property owners.
- The District has no control over the per pupil funding formula for Operations and Maintenance, Capital Outlay and Soft Capital, and what the Legislature determines for the school district budget based on the formula.
What do the different line items on my property tax bill mean?
- The first Yuma Union line on your property tax bill is Operations and Maintenance, which appears as Primary O&M on your tax bill. O&M includes salaries for all employees and supplies.
- Yuma Union also has another line on your property tax bill for Secondary. This item represents the 2005 Bond that was approved by the voters and must be paid back over a specific period of time.
Why are there two lines on some people’s bills for Yuma Union’s Primary tax rates?
- The first line is the amount that needs to be generated before any equalization
payments are applied. The second line is the equalization payment, which is
supposed to equalize the whole state. The second line may show on the tax
bill as a credit, or reduction, of the property bill.