by Sarah Curry
Director of Fiscal Policy Studies
A headline article today in the Asheville Citizen-Times states there is interest in a county tax increase to fund schools. The reasoning behind the push for the tax is a comparison of Buncombe County Schools and Asheville City Schools. The per pupil expenditure in the two school districts is very different, stemming from additional local money that is collected from the city tax.
Statements in the article claim, “The discussion about the supplemental tax has emerged amid shrinking state budgets and the debate over how to fund public education.” There has not been any discussion of decreasing the K-12 public education budget. Quite the opposite, it has been where to cut other areas of the budget for the increase in public education.
Public Education Budget Proposal Increases from last fiscal year
See the difference between the local funding for the Asheville City Schools in comparison to the Buncombe County Schools. The state amount of per pupil expenditures says almost identical. The major difference is in the local portion of the funding amount – not the state portion.