The "fellows" at the loony bin of right-wing politics, the MacIver Institute, are saying desperate school districts are trying to avoid "education" Gov. Scott Walker's latest attack on our public schools by taking away the Energy Efficiency Exemption. Yea right, "supposed energy efficiency," like anyone cares about that?
...the termination of the Energy Efficiency Exemption (EEE). This loophole allowed school districts to raise taxes for supposed energy efficiency projects without going to referendum. Last year alone, districts collected an additional $92.3 million through the EEE. With the program eliminated, property taxes in those 148 school districts will automatically drop $92.3 million.Flat earth Republicans have again drummed up phony outrage over school districts attempts to save energy costs by upgrading systems and building new schools that are environmentally friendly and better learning environments. Yea, like climate change, is real.
Republicans not only hate the clean energy push, but they are also desperate to preserve high fuel costs for Big Energy campaign donors. So they're claiming districts are scamming taxpayers with promises of energy savings when all they want to do is trick them into building modern high tech schools. As the Cap Times' "State Debate" put it...
The conservative MacIver Institute's Bill Osmulski complains that Wisconsin school districts are using "massive tax cuts" engineered by Scott Walker and the Republican Legislature to mask "huge" referendum tax hikes. It seems the harder state officials try to cut taxes, the harder local school district officials try to figure out ways to spend, he asserts.It's alright to laugh. Check out the MacIver "News" services comment below, and tell me if their logic could also be applied to the massive and "considerable" Foxconn handout that won't be paid off for 30 or more years. Ironic?
The energy savings on many of these projects is negligible. It will be decades before the savings justify the expense – which was considerable.Crazy isn't it? I remember not too long ago when the steel pole building-like Kromrey Middle School had a massive and dangerous mold problem. There were giant fans airing out rooms and hallways 24/7 because of its outdated or nonexistent ventilation system. At a district meeting with parents, there were some who didn't care and thought a new school was an overreaction, that the unsolvable problem was something we could live with.
So after cutting the EEE, districts will see a "tax cut"...unless they smartly propose what would be a revenue-neutral spending referendum. Did you ever get the idea that families actually want their kids to get a great education, putting that first, above tax cuts?
Their mindless whining continued, with MacIver "fellows" condescendingly saying district residents just don't understand these "tricks" or how to spend their money wisely. But I thought people knew best?
Throughout the state, there are a total of 61 districts going to referendum next month. The combined cost is $1.25 billion for construction, $157 million for one-time operations, and $26 million in permanent annual operations spending. Not all of those districts have the EEE “opportunity levy” to exploit, but there are other ways to create the same illusion of little to no tax impact.Authoritarian Much? MacIver wants you to believe that the "conservative elite" at the state Capitol, Walker, Republican "leaders," and think tanks should be calling all the shots, not you. Like they say, "You're going to love our tax cuts, whether you like it or not."
From the tactics and literature accompanying this year’s referendums, it appears the harder the state works to provide property tax relief, the harder local school officials will work to keep local taxpayers from ever benefiting from it.