Additional Information Concerning GA-0775
The following information is provided by the Comptroller of Public Accounts as a public service and is intended to be used solely for informational purposes. This question and answer format should not be used as a substitution for a thorough review of the Attorney General Opinion GA-0775.
Five issues addressed by the AG Opinion 0775
Question 1- Can a school district adopt an M & O rate above the rollback M & O rate without having a rollback election?
Answer – No. A school district is not authorized to increase the adopted M & O tax rate above the maximum M & O tax rate component without having a rollback election.
Question 2 – Does a school district have to hold a rollback election to adopt a rate higher than a rollback rate if the school district had adopted a higher than rollback rate the previous year because of a disaster?
Answer – Yes. A school district must hold an election to approve a rate previously adopted under the disaster exception in order to adopt that rate in a subsequent year, if that rate exceeds the district’s rollback rate for the subsequent year. The disaster provision only allows a higher than rollback rate, without an election, in the year after the disaster.
Question 3 – Can a school district board of trustees adopt a rate lower than the rate that was ratified (approved) by the voters in a rollback election?
Answer – No. The voters have set the tax rate by election and the school board of trustees cannot choose to set a lower rate.
Question 4 – If the voters of a school district approve a rollback election, is the district permanently entitled to the additional increment in rate (additional pennies)?
Answer – It depends. The revenue from the extra pennies is incorporated into the rollback calculation for the next year. Tax revenues derived from the voter approved rate increases in the preceding year are part of the revenues generated in the preceding year and are used to calculate the effective M & O tax rate for the current year. A school district’s authority to adopt a particular M & O tax rate in subsequent years will necessarily depend on a district’s maximum M & O tax rate calculated for the purposes of the rollback rate for those subsequent years.
Question 5 – Can a school district calculate its rollback rate based on the school district’s projection of taxable value if it has not received a certified appraisal roll from the appraisal district?
Answer – No. The school district is not authorized to calculate it rollback rate based on a district-generated projection of taxable value in the district.
The preceding information neither constitutes nor serves as a substitute for legal advice. To obtain professional assurance regarding the issues addressed herein, the services of a competent professional should be sought.