SCOTT COUNTY, Ky. (WTVQ)-The votes are in. Scott County will soon have a second high school. The School Board voted Tuesday to increase taxes to help pay for the new school. Not everyone is a fan of the tax hike. People fighting against it say they know more schools are needed. Several even said they’d be willing to pay more. They just want to make sure the School Board is planning in a way that will minimize future hikes.
Scott County High Shool is crowded.
“Scott County has been reported often and most recently as the fastest growing county in Kentucky,” Superintendent Dr. Kevin Hub said.
Hub projects in the next few years when the current 2nd through 5th graders are in high school there will be 1,000 more students in grades 9-12 than there are now so the plan is to build new elementary, middle, and high schools. The high school alone is expected to cost more than $57,000,000. To help pay, the board just voted on a tax hike that would increase the average family’s taxes by $85.50.
“There’s no other way to get that much that money that quickly,” the Superintendent said.
During public comment, some criticized the increase.
“Let’s be straight forward on this tax. It needs to be for a period of time and that’s it,” Burford Feltner said.
The tax has no set end date, which worried some people that the money could be mismanaged, just leading to another increase.
“More and more and more buildings is going to raise the tax base and the tax base is going to increase over the next 10-20 years faster than I think any of you can realize,” Christina Rush said.
Similar measures to fund expansion have failed in the last several years. Tax increase supporters say there’s no more time to waste.
“The time is now. We can’t delay. We can’t delay a vote tonight people,” Karen Ogle said.
The board didn’t delay. They voted unamiously to pass the increase. Now, it is recallable so people in the community have until March to petition. If that happens, the school board could choose to have a special election to decide whether to go through with the increase. If the tax hike does take effect, people in Scott County wouldn’t see it on their statements until this fall.