published Saturday, April 28th, 2012

School board to vote on tax support

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CLEVELAND, Tenn. -- The Cleveland Board of Education announced Friday a special meeting Tuesday to vote on whether to support the Bradley County resolution calling for a $32 wheel tax referendum in August.

The meeting will be at 10 a.m. at the city schools office on Mouse Creek Road, city schools Director Martin Ringstaff said.

The resolution on the city board's agenda notes that the Bradley County Commission's Resolution 2012-13 says all proceeds of a countywide motor vehicle tax "shall be deposited in the Debt Service Fund, for principal, interest and fees on education capital projects" and a clarifying resolution says "all proceeds from the Wheel Tax will be deposited for the proposed education capital project debt for both Bradley County and Cleveland city schools."

According to the resolution to be voted on Tuesday, "the Cleveland City Schools immediate portion of the Wheel Tax would include a maximum of $10.7 million as determined by average daily membership."

By law, any money Bradley County raises for public education is shared with the city based on student population. The city school system gets one out of each three dollars raised. County schools have more than 10,000 students, and city schools total more than 5,000 students.

"I am going to do everything I can on behalf of the county school system, the city system," county school board Chairman Charlie Rose said Tuesday.

According to County Commission Resolution 2012-24, the county schools' capital projects list could include $12.1 million for a new academic building at Lake Forest Middle School, $2 million for an eight-classroom addition at Walker Valley High School and $7.1 million for a new Blue Springs School plus the $10.7 million for city schools.

The County Commission passed the resolution on April 2. The referendum will be on the Aug. 2 ballot.

about Randall Higgins...

Randall Higgins covers news in Cleveland, Tenn., for the Times Free Press. He started work with the Chattanooga Times in 1977 and joined the staff of the Chattanooga Times Free Press when the Free Press and Times merged in 1999. Randall has covered Southeast Tennessee, Northwest Georgia and Alabama. He now covers Cleveland and Bradley County and the neighboring region. Randall is a Cleveland native. He has bachelor’s degree from Tennessee Technological University. His awards ...

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