Revamped R-3 tax increase proposal in 2014 likely

Nearly one year ago, the Platte County R-3 Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) was born. The CAC was formed in the wake of the R-3 School District’s tax levy increase defeat at the polls and was tasked with not only analyzing why the measure did not gain voter approval, but how the District would manage student growth going forward. Now, after months of meetings, the CAC, comprised of District patrons, community members, teachers and administrators, has apparently locked in on some core objectives for the future to recommend to the R-3 Board of Education.

The final official recommendation is not expected until a planned CAC meeting in July, but R-3 Superintendent Dr. Mike Reik said this week that the group has determined the District should place a tax levy increase question on the ballot in 2014. That could mean putting the question before voters in April, but Reik said August may be more likely. The amount has yet to be finalized, but it may not be as much as the 60-cent levy increase that was shot down by voters in April 2012.

“It looks to be slightly less than (60 cents),” Reik said.

Reik also added that the CAC has determined that the tax increase proposal should include a sunset provision (a date when the tax would expire), which many patrons identified as a reason they voted against the previous proposal.

“We are looking at a sunset of the entire tax amount in 20 years,” Reik said. “We hope this brings more people out in support of the issue.”