Chambers County School District wants to renew sales tax - Alabamas13.com WVTM-TV Birmingham, AL

Chambers County School District wants to renew sales tax

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Chambers County, Al. - Chambers County school officials are hoping residents will vote "Yes" to renew a one percent sales tax that benefits the school district. The tax funds of number of positions and programs that are not covered by state funding.

"This is pretty significant to our budgets," said Superintendent Kelli Hodge.

It's the one percent sales tax on all purchases in Chambers County that benefits the local school systems. Residents are taxed a penny on every dollar they spend which adds up to more than $2 million in yearly revenue for Chambers County Schools.

"It's money that's very important to continue with the current level of service that we provide," said Dr. Hodge.

The Superintendent says it's an important chuck of the district $35 million budget. The tax helps pay for utilities at the 10 schools and Career Technical Center along with maintenance, renovations, and improvements. Hodge says over the past 7 years the district has lost more than 22% of their state funding making the sales tax renewal crucial for the future of their schools.

"If this tax goes away, our reserve will be depleted in 2 years," said Dr. Hodge.

The sales tax also benefits Lanett City Schools. Over the past 7 years they've collected more than $3 million to upkeep their district. The school district uses their nearly half a million dollar portion to provide textbooks to students and cover transportation costs among other things. If it passes, Dr. Hodge says the renewal will have a long term impact.

"We want to continue this for an additional 30 years. So that we make sure that we're looking at the long haul and have a vision for Chambers County that we want to continue to grow and be able to provide for the kids," said Dr. Hodge.

The sales tax has been in place for more than 35 years. Voters will cast their ballots June 3rd.

Naomi Keitt

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