Idahoans from Kuna to Coeur d’Alene, from Boise to American Falls, will make some tough choices as they vote on assorted bond issues and levies on March 14. In order to operate, 93 out of 115 school districts currently have a voter-approved supplemental levy on the books; the districts are collecting a record $188.8 million this year.

As voters weigh their options, here’s a question to consider: Should Idaho eliminate local education-related levies?

It could be argued levies inherently create inequities among Idaho’s different communities.  A community with a lower-income population can’t be expected to fund the same levy that their neighbors in more affluent districts can afford.

Idaho’s constitution says legislators should “maintain a general, uniform and thorough system of public, free common schools.”

Do levies prevent that from happening?

References Cited:

Idaho State Department of Education: Tax Levies for School Purposes

Idaho Education News: Idaho Supplemental Tax Bill Hits Record on Idaho Education News