BAS seeks millage for repairs, upgrades

WIND DAMAGE-A structure on the Baraga school roof was damaged by wind some time ago and remains unrepaired. The district is seeking three mills for nine years to tackle present and future repairs and upgrades.

by Barry Drue
Now that Baraga’s school loan for the 1980 construction is paid off, the district is attempting to situate itself to fund existing and anticipated future maintenance, repairs, building improvements, security and technology upgrades. Baraga Area Schools will have a “Sinking Fund” millage request before district voters on the Aug. 7, 2018, Primary Election ballot. The proposal is for three mills for nine years. Sinking Fund millages have been passed in other area districts, including L’Anse. These millages cannot be used to pay salaries, athletic expenses or district operational expenses. “A sinking fund millage is levied, not borrowed, which means the revenues are generated annually from a tax and do not include the district taking on additional debt or interest expense,” Baraga Superintendent Rich Sarau explained. Three mills would generate about $202,000 in the first year. BAS calculated that a taxpayer with a property with a market value of $40,000 ($20,000 taxable value) would pay $60 per year for the additional three mills. On the higher end a taxpayer with a property with a market value of $240,000 ($120,000 taxable value) would pay an additional $360 per year for three mills. To read more, subscribe to the L’Anse Sentinel online, or buy a print copy at our local retailers.