2022 Educational Programs & Operations Levy

Educational Programs & Operations Levy

Fife Public Schools is seeking voter approval on February 8, 2022 for a renewal of our four year Educational Programs and Operations (EP&O) Levy (called "Proposition No. 1 - Replacement Educational Programs & Operations Levy" on the ballot).

Here are some frequently asked questions about this educational programs and operations levy. Please let us know if you have any additional questions.

What is a levy and how is this different from a bond?

Levies are for learning. They help fund essential programs, and support services not funded by state or federal resources. Levies also provide enrichment opportunities for all students. They are a continued investment in our student's high quality education that includes:

  • Special education, remediation, and English as a Second Language programs

  • Health services, psychologists, and counselors

  • Additional certificated and classified personnel

  • Professional development for teachers and instructional assistants

  • Programs to challenge students such as gifted and advanced placement

  • Textbooks, curriculum, and other instructional materials

  • Transportation services

  • Athletics and other extracurricular activities such as drama and music


Is this a new tax?

No.  This levy replaces or ‘renews’ our current levy that expires at the end of 2022.

How often does a school district run a levy?
School districts are authorized to run Educational Programs and Operations levies up to 4 year terms.  The current levy was approved by voters in 2018.

What does it take to pass a levy?
Levies require a simple majority of approval by district voters to pass.  This means 50% + 1 of the total votes cast.

Why does the district have to request a levy?  Doesn’t the State pay for schools?
State and other funding does not provide the necessary resources required to operate our school district.  The funds from this replacement levy allows the district to continue programs and services that are not funded or fully funded by the state.

How much is the levy?
Listed below are the collection years and annual levy amounts:

  • 2023 - $10,593,000

  • 2024 - $11,017,000

  • 2025 - $11,458,000

  • 2026 - $12,145,000


How much will the two levies cost?

The replacement Educational Programs & Operations Levy is expected to decrease over the next four years. The replacement Technology Levy is expected to increase. The net change over four years is an increase of $.02 cents per thousand of assessed value.

    Estimated Rates per $1,000 Assessed Valuation  
        Current Projected  
         2022 2023 2024 2025  2026  
  Proposition 1  Educational Programs & Operations Levy     1.83    1.81  1.77  1.74  1.74  
  Proposition 2 Technology Levy    0.23    0.34 0.34 0.34 0.34  
    Total    2.06 2.15 2.11 2.08 2.08  



What does the change per $1,000 mean to me?

Property taxes are estimated at ‘rate per $1,000’ of assessed value.  This means in 2022, the owner of a home assessed at $300,000 is estimated to pay $51.50 per month for both the EP&O and Technology Levy. Below are the estimated monthly changes based on a home valued at $300,000:

  • 2023 increase of $2.25 per month
  • 2024 decrease of $1.00 per month
  • 2025 decrease of $0.75 per month
  • 2026 no change

How does the rate per $1,000 compare to other disticts?
Fife School District rates have historically been one of the lowest in Pierce County. 

district comparison chart

If my property value goes up will my taxes increase as well?
Usually when property values increase, the rates go down.  This is because school district levies have a fixed amount approved by voters to be collected.  This amount is spread among all taxable property in the district. 

What happens if the levy doesn’t pass?
Typically, following a levy failure there will be cuts to the educational programs, services, and extracurricular activities our students experience every day. Extracurricular activities include things like sports and arts. Levy failures can also result in an increase in class size.

Will the ballot have both the EP&O Levy and the Technology Levy?  Do I vote twice?
Yes! The levy is a separate proposition. They will be listed as Proposition 1 and Proposition 2.

Am I eligible for an exemption from property taxes?

Under certain conditions, people with disabilities or citizens 61 years of age or older are eligible for a tax exemption.  Consideration is given to income, ownership of taxable residence and other factors.  For more information and to apply for an exemption, contact your county assessor’s office, or click here:  King County | Pierce County

 

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