Friday, July 27, 2012

Belvidere School District considers consolidating bus routes - Rockford, IL - Rockford Register Star

 

Belvidere School District may consolidate more bus routes this school year to eliminate $700,000 worth of debt in the transportation fund.

All students who are eligible to be picked up would still receive services but the physical location or time may slightly change, said Greg Brown, director of business services for Belvidere School District

Click on the following for more details:  Belvidere School District considers consolidating bus routes - Rockford, IL - Rockford Register Star

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Bryon Houy leaves Belvidere, school district in search of new AD - Rockford, IL - Rockford Register Star

By Emily Tropp

Cash strapped District 100 will now have two Athletic Directors.

Bryon Houy carried the weight of two high schools on his shoulders as athletic director for both Belvidere and Belvidere North.

And now that Houy is leaving, the district is in the middle of finding a replacement for North with just one month left until the new school year starts.

A new athletic director has already been hired for Belvidere. Jeff Dobberton was a full-time staff member under Houy last year and also served as assistant principal, and he takes over full AD duties now.

District 100 Superintendent Michael Houselog said interviews for the new AD spot at North took place last week.

“We had some good internal and external candidates,” Houselog said. “Bryon had five great years here, …

Read the entire article by clicking on the followingBryon Houy leaves Belvidere, school district in search of new AD - Rockford, IL - Rockford Register Star

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

u. of i. law school fined - chicagotribune.com

University of Illinois College of Law has been censured and fined $250,000 for intentionally publishing false admissions information to make the student body look more academically accomplished than it was.

It is the first time the American Bar Association has fined a university for reporting inaccurate consumer data, according to an ABA spokesman.

 

Read the entire article by clicking on the followingu. of i. law school fined - chicagotribune.com

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

School Facility Occupation Taxes

Belvidere Community District 100 has just placed on the November ballot a referendum which would enact a 1% sales tax.  The Illinois statute on this issue follows:

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Below is from:

http://ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=005500050K5-1006.7

(55 ILCS 5/5-1006.7)
Sec. 5-1006.7. School facility occupation taxes.
(a) In any county, a tax shall be imposed upon all persons engaged in the business of selling tangible personal property, other than personal property titled or registered with an agency of this State's government, at retail in the county on the gross receipts from the sales made in the course of business to provide revenue to be used exclusively for school facility purposes if a proposition for the tax has been submitted to the electors of that county and approved by a majority of those voting on the question as provided in subsection (c). The tax under this Section may shall be imposed only in one-quarter percent increments and not exceed 1%.
This additional tax may not be imposed on the sale of food for human consumption that is to be consumed off the premises where it is sold (other than alcoholic beverages, soft drinks, and food that has been prepared for immediate consumption) and prescription and non-prescription medicines, drugs, medical appliances and insulin, urine testing materials, syringes and needles used by diabetics. The Department of Revenue has full power to administer and enforce this subsection, to collect all taxes and penalties due under this subsection, to dispose of taxes and penalties so collected in the manner provided in this subsection, and to determine all rights to credit memoranda arising on account of the erroneous payment of a tax or penalty under this subsection. The Department shall deposit all taxes and penalties collected under this subsection into a special fund created for that purpose.
In the administration of and compliance with this subsection, the Department and persons who are subject to this subsection (i) have the same rights, remedies, privileges, immunities, powers, and duties, (ii) are subject to the same conditions, restrictions, limitations, penalties, and definitions of terms, and (iii) shall employ the same modes of procedure as are set forth in Sections 1 through 1o, 2 through 2-70 (in respect to all provisions contained in those Sections other than the State rate of tax), 2a through 2h, 3 (except as to the disposition of taxes and penalties collected), 4, 5, 5a, 5b, 5c, 5d, 5e, 5f, 5g, 5h, 5i, 5j, 5k, 5l, 6, 6a, 6b, 6c, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 11a, 12, and 13 of the Retailers' Occupation Tax Act and all provisions of the Uniform Penalty and Interest Act as if those provisions were set forth in this subsection.
The certificate of registration that is issued by the Department to a retailer under the Retailers' Occupation Tax Act permits the retailer to engage in a business that is taxable without registering separately with the Department under an ordinance or resolution under this subsection.
Persons subject to any tax imposed under the authority granted in this subsection may reimburse themselves for their seller's tax liability by separately stating that tax as an additional charge, which may be stated in combination, in a single amount, with State tax that sellers are required to collect under the Use Tax Act, pursuant to any bracketed schedules set forth by the Department.
(b) If a tax has been imposed under subsection (a), then a service occupation tax must also be imposed at the same rate upon all persons engaged, in the county, in the business of making sales of service, who, as an incident to making those sales of service, transfer tangible personal property within the county as an incident to a sale of service.
This tax may not be imposed on sales of food for human consumption that is to be consumed off the premises where it is sold (other than alcoholic beverages, soft drinks, and food prepared for immediate consumption) and prescription and non-prescription medicines, drugs, medical appliances and insulin, urine testing materials, syringes, and needles used by diabetics.
The tax imposed under this subsection and all civil penalties that may be assessed as an incident thereof shall be collected and enforced by the Department and deposited into a special fund created for that purpose. The Department has full power to administer and enforce this subsection, to collect all taxes and penalties due under this subsection, to dispose of taxes and penalties so collected in the manner provided in this subsection, and to determine all rights to credit memoranda arising on account of the erroneous payment of a tax or penalty under this subsection.
In the administration of and compliance with this subsection, the Department and persons who are subject to this subsection shall (i) have the same rights, remedies, privileges, immunities, powers and duties, (ii) be subject to the same conditions, restrictions, limitations, penalties and definition of terms, and (iii) employ the same modes of procedure as are set forth in Sections 2 (except that that reference to State in the definition of supplier maintaining a place of business in this State means the county), 2a through 2d, 3 through 3-50 (in respect to all provisions contained in those Sections other than the State rate of tax), 4 (except that the reference to the State shall be to the county), 5, 7, 8 (except that the jurisdiction to which the tax is a debt to the extent indicated in that Section 8 is the county), 9 (except as to the disposition of taxes and penalties collected), 10, 11, 12 (except the reference therein to Section 2b of the Retailers' Occupation Tax Act), 13 (except that any reference to the State means the county), Section 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, and 20 of the Service Occupation Tax Act and all provisions of the Uniform Penalty and Interest Act, as fully as if those provisions were set forth herein.
Persons subject to any tax imposed under the authority granted in this subsection may reimburse themselves for their serviceman's tax liability by separately stating the tax as an additional charge, which may be stated in combination, in a single amount, with State tax that servicemen are authorized to collect under the Service Use Tax Act, pursuant to any bracketed schedules set forth by the Department.
(c) The tax under this Section may not be imposed until the question of imposing the tax has been submitted to the electors of the county at a regular election and approved by a majority of the electors voting on the question. For all regular elections held prior to the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 97th General Assembly, upon a resolution by the county board or a resolution by school district boards that represent at least 51% of the student enrollment within the county, the county board must certify the question to the proper election authority in accordance with the Election Code.
For all regular elections held prior to the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 97th General Assembly, the election authority must submit the question in substantially the following form:
Shall (name of county) be authorized to impose a

retailers' occupation tax and a service occupation tax (commonly referred to as a "sales tax") at a rate of (insert rate) to be used exclusively for school facility purposes?</DIV">

The election authority must record the votes as "Yes" or "No".
If a majority of the electors voting on the question vote in the affirmative, then the county may, thereafter, impose the tax.
For all regular elections held on or after the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 97th General Assembly, the regional superintendent of schools for the county must, upon receipt of a resolution or resolutions of school district boards that represent more than 50% of the student enrollment within the county, certify the question to the proper election authority for submission to the electors of the county at the next regular election at which the question lawfully may be submitted to the electors, all in accordance with the Election Code.
For all regular elections held on or after the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 97th General Assembly, the election authority must submit the question in substantially the following form:
Shall a retailers' occupation tax and a service

occupation tax (commonly referred to as a "sales tax") be imposed in (name of county) at a rate of (insert rate) to be used exclusively for school facility purposes?</DIV">

The election authority must record the votes as "Yes" or "No".
If a majority of the electors voting on the question vote in the affirmative, then the tax shall be imposed at the rate set forth in the question.
For the purposes of this subsection (c), "enrollment" means the head count of the students residing in the county on the last school day of September of each year, which must be reported on the Illinois State Board of Education Public School Fall Enrollment/Housing Report.
(d) The Department shall immediately pay over to the State Treasurer, ex officio, as trustee, all taxes and penalties collected under this Section to be deposited into the School Facility Occupation Tax Fund, which shall be an unappropriated trust fund held outside the State treasury.
On or before the 25th day of each calendar month, the Department shall prepare and certify to the Comptroller the disbursement of stated sums of money to the regional superintendents of schools in counties from which retailers or servicemen have paid taxes or penalties to the Department during the second preceding calendar month. The amount to be paid to each regional superintendent of schools and disbursed to him or her in accordance with 3-14.31 of the School Code, is equal to the amount (not including credit memoranda) collected from the county under this Section during the second preceding calendar month by the Department, (i) less 2% of that amount, which shall be deposited into the Tax Compliance and Administration Fund and shall be used by the Department, subject to appropriation, to cover the costs of the Department in administering and enforcing the provisions of this Section, on behalf of the county, (ii) plus an amount that the Department determines is necessary to offset any amounts that were erroneously paid to a different taxing body; (iii) less an amount equal to the amount of refunds made during the second preceding calendar month by the Department on behalf of the county; and (iv) less any amount that the Department determines is necessary to offset any amounts that were payable to a different taxing body but were erroneously paid to the county. When certifying the amount of a monthly disbursement to a regional superintendent of schools under this Section, the Department shall increase or decrease the amounts by an amount necessary to offset any miscalculation of previous disbursements within the previous 6 months from the time a miscalculation is discovered.
Within 10 days after receipt by the Comptroller from the Department of the disbursement certification to the regional superintendents of the schools provided for in this Section, the Comptroller shall cause the orders to be drawn for the respective amounts in accordance with directions contained in the certification.
If the Department determines that a refund should be made under this Section to a claimant instead of issuing a credit memorandum, then the Department shall notify the Comptroller, who shall cause the order to be drawn for the amount specified and to the person named in the notification from the Department. The refund shall be paid by the Treasurer out of the School Facility Occupation Tax Fund.
(e) For the purposes of determining the local governmental unit whose tax is applicable, a retail sale by a producer of coal or another mineral mined in Illinois is a sale at retail at the place where the coal or other mineral mined in Illinois is extracted from the earth. This subsection does not apply to coal or another mineral when it is delivered or shipped by the seller to the purchaser at a point outside Illinois so that the sale is exempt under the United States Constitution as a sale in interstate or foreign commerce.
(f) Nothing in this Section may be construed to authorize a tax to be imposed upon the privilege of engaging in any business that under the Constitution of the United States may not be made the subject of taxation by this State.
(g) If a county board imposes a tax under this Section pursuant to a referendum held before the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 97th General Assembly at a rate below the rate set forth in the question approved by a majority of electors of that county voting on the question as provided in subsection (c), then the county board may, by ordinance, increase the rate of the tax up to the rate set forth in the question approved by a majority of electors of that county voting on the question as provided in subsection (c). If a county board imposes a tax under this Section pursuant to a referendum held before the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 97th General Assembly, then the board may, by ordinance, discontinue or reduce the rate of the tax. If a tax is imposed under this Section pursuant to a referendum held on or after the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 97th General Assembly, then the county board may reduce or discontinue the tax, but only in accordance with subsection (h-5) of this Section. If, however, a school board issues bonds that are secured by the proceeds of the tax under this Section, then the county board may not reduce the tax rate or discontinue the tax if that rate reduction or discontinuance would adversely affect the school board's ability to pay the principal and interest on those bonds as they become due or necessitate the extension of additional property taxes to pay the principal and interest on those bonds. If the county board reduces the tax rate or discontinues the tax, then a referendum must be held in accordance with subsection (c) of this Section in order to increase the rate of the tax or to reimpose the discontinued tax.
The results of any election that imposes, reduces, or discontinues a tax under this Section must be certified by the election authority, and any ordinance that increases or lowers the rate or discontinues the tax must be certified by the county clerk and, in each case, filed with the Illinois Department of Revenue either (i) on or before the first day of April, whereupon the Department shall proceed to administer and enforce the tax or change in the rate as of the first day of July next following the filing; or (ii) on or before the first day of October, whereupon the Department shall proceed to administer and enforce the tax or change in the rate as of the first day of January next following the filing.
(h) For purposes of this Section, "school facility purposes" means (i) the acquisition, development, construction, reconstruction, rehabilitation, improvement, financing, architectural planning, and installation of capital facilities consisting of buildings, structures, and durable equipment and for the acquisition and improvement of real property and interest in real property required, or expected to be required, in connection with the capital facilities and (ii) the payment of bonds or other obligations heretofore or hereafter issued, including bonds or other obligations heretofore or hereafter issued to refund or to continue to refund bonds or other obligations issued, for school facility purposes, provided that the taxes levied to pay those bonds are abated by the amount of the taxes imposed under this Section that are used to pay those bonds. "School-facility purposes" also includes fire prevention, safety, energy conservation, disabled accessibility, school security, and specified repair purposes set forth under Section 17-2.11 of the School Code.
(h-5) A county board in a county where a tax has been imposed under this Section pursuant to a referendum held on or after the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 97th General Assembly may, by ordinance or resolution, submit to the voters of the county the question of reducing or discontinuing the tax. In the ordinance or resolution, the county board shall certify the question to the proper election authority in accordance with the Election Code. The election authority must submit the question in substantially the following form:
Shall the school facility retailers' occupation tax

and service occupation tax (commonly referred to as the "school facility sales tax") currently imposed in (name of county) at a rate of (insert rate) be (reduced to (insert rate))(discontinued)?</DIV">

If a majority of the electors voting on the question vote in the affirmative, then, subject to the provisions of subsection (g) of this Section, the tax shall be reduced or discontinued as set forth in the question.
(i) This Section does not apply to Cook County.
(j) This Section may be cited as the County School Facility Occupation Tax Law.
(Source: P.A. 97-542, eff. 8-23-11.)

Tax revenue rolls in for local schools - Lincoln, IL - Lincoln Courier

 

Regional superintendent Jean Anderson said this is the fourth reimbursement payment of the Logan County School Facilities Sales Tax that is collected and distributed by state revenue officials.

The payment covers the sales month of April 2012 and was received Thursday,” Anderson said in an email. “The amount received was $151,316.11.”

The funds, she said, may be used by the districts for school facility purposes that are outlined in the School Code portion of the Illinois Compiled statutes. Distributions are based on the Fall 2011 enrollment numbers that school officials reported to the Illinois State Board of Education. These funds go to all public school districts that have territory in Logan County based on the number of students who live in that territory.

Click on the following for more details:  Tax revenue rolls in for local schools - Lincoln, IL - Lincoln Courier

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

District 100’s sales tax: How did we get here?

Does anyone remember Unicom and Vision 100?  Will we see them again?

 

Below is Unicom’s statement concerning their accomplishments in Belvidere. District 100 hired them for work on the District paid study “Vision 100” and then the privately funded “Citizens with a Vision” hired them for the campaign. Who “really paid” what?

sselections_belvidereschool1sselections_belvidereschool2sselections_belvidereschool3

spacerThe following is an advertisement from Unicom

Client: Belvidere Community Unit School District 100
Challenge: The City of Belvidere, an eastern suburb of Rockford, Illinois was becoming a far west suburb of Chicago. As a result, school enrollment was exploding. Unfortunately, the District was plagued with the same kind of electoral problems facing many of the Districts in the Rockford area: multiple losses at the polls by margins at or exceeding two to one.
Solution: A community engagement program was used to generate community understanding and support for a second high school and additional facility improvements. Following that program, UNICOM•ARC worked with “Citizens with a Vision” in developing an aggressive campaign that involved extensive door-to-door direct voter contact programs, distribution of an informational video (reproduced on DVD), direct mail, movie theater slides, television advertising and automated phone calls. Following the election, the District was able to build a second high school and another elementary school and embark on the second phase of its long term plan for improving the schools.

Belvidere School Board backs a higher sales tax -

By Jennifer Wheeler

The board gave its approval tonight the “county school facility tax," which would provide another source of revenue to pay off an anticipated $179 million in bond and interest payments owed after fixing and constructing new schools.

The county school facility tax would increase the 6.75 percent sales tax to 7.75 percent. Vehicles, medicine and groceries are exempt.

Tax revenue generated would be used to pay off these bonds by 2025. Without it, the school district must rely on property taxes to pay the debt.

….Without the sales tax, residents who own homes valued at $100,000 are expected to see a property tax increase to $358 in 2013 to $697 in 2019

Of the $2.7 million generated, $2.2 million would go to Belvidere School District

 

Click on the following to read the entire story: http://www.rrstar.com/updates/x736424446/Belvidere-School-Board-backs-a-higher-sales-tax

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Belvidere sales tax survey results - Rockford, IL - Rockford Register Star

By Jennifer Wheeler

More than 71 percent of participants favored increasing the county sales tax 1-percentage-point.

  • Over 70 percent of individuals favored the school board adopting a policy that would limit District 100’s use of sales tax proceeds to paying off more than an anticipated $179 million in outstanding bonds and interest.
  • Click on the following for the complete RRStar Blog:  Belvidere sales tax survey results - Rockford, IL - Rockford Register Star

    Note some of the questions appeared less than objective.  For example:  “At this point of time would you favor increasing the county’s sales tax by 1 percent for the benefit of school age children

    Click on the photocopy to enlarge.

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    For the entire survey questionnaire go to: http://www.district100watchdog.blogspot.com/2012/07/belvidere-school-district-seeks-input.html

    U of I contract questioned over potential conflict - Rockford, IL - Rockford Register Star

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    contract with BLDD Architects is part of the renovation of the Natural History Building on the Urbana-Champaign campus. Bruce Maxey owns 8.9 percent of BLDD. His wife, Jill, is the university’s associate director of planning and a former BLDD employee.

    Click on the following for all of the details: U of I contract questioned over potential conflict - Rockford, IL - Rockford Register Star

    Thursday, July 5, 2012

    Bill Pysson to run for Boone County Board

    By Jennifer Wheeler (from:  http://www.rrstar.com/blogs/x425608163/Bill-Pysson-to-run-for-Boone-County-Board)

    (photo) Bill Pysson

    Bill Pysson announced his intentions to run for the Boone County Board last week with the hope of offering voters a Democratic choice and increasing transparency.

    He is running for a District 1 seat.

    Pysson said the board needs to take a more pro-active approach to holding elected officials accountable, especially when dealing with taxpayer’s dollars. Additionally, he said there needs to be a Democratic voice on the board.

    “The unfortunate is with the majority currently held by (Board Chairman Bob) Walberg, it’s going to be very difficult. If we get a few more Democrats in there I think that would help,” he added.

    He said he intends to provide more information to other local governments so everyone understands the issue. During meetings, he hopes to limit the amount of topics discussed in closed session.

    Pysson attempted to run for the Belvidere School Board in 2009 but the district’s election official determined that his petition did not meet the requirements to be certified. The district’s election official, Pam Wallace, said he failed to properly indicate whether he was seeking a two- or four-year term.

    Though Pysson believes Wallace erred in her decision, he said he is making sure all of his requirements have been met this year.

    For more information on Pysson, visit his website at:  Boonecountywatch.blogspot.com.

     

    In case anyone wishes to review the 2009 ordeal with District 100 here are citations.  As you can see I attempted to be very transparent with the public on the issue.  Start at the bottom of the list if you wish to read in chronological order.

    Just click on the address.

    http://district100watchdog.blogspot.com/2009/02/what-was-unclear.html

    http://district100watchdog.blogspot.com/2009/02/what-would-lincoln-say.html

    http://district100watchdog.blogspot.com/2009/02/help-help-help-help-help.html

    http://district100watchdog.blogspot.com/2009/02/motion-to-strike-and-dismiss.html

    http://district100watchdog.blogspot.com/2009/02/some-details-from-2102009-objection.html

    http://www.rrstar.com/news/x1851010705/Challenged-Belvidere-School-Board-candidate-granted-extension

    http://district100watchdog.blogspot.com/2009/02/half-of-motion-passes-case-is-postponed.html

    http://district100watchdog.blogspot.com/2009/02/attention-observers-to-electoral.html

    http://district100watchdog.blogspot.com/2009/02/hearing-date-400-pm-monday-february-9.html

    http://district100watchdog.blogspot.com/2009/02/district-100-and-my-due-processa-rush.html

    http://district100watchdog.blogspot.com/2009/02/billwhat-can-i-do.html

    http://district100watchdog.blogspot.com/2009/02/let-you-be-judgemy-opponent-mr-powell_06.html

    http://district100watchdog.blogspot.com/2009/02/bill-pyssoncandidate-for-district-100_04.html

    Wednesday, July 4, 2012

    Belvidere School District Seeks Input on Sales Tax Increase

     

    Thirty to forty percent of the sales tax revenue generated in Boone County comes from people outside of Boone County.

    The district is asking community members to take a two-minute online survey on the proposed tax. They'll use those results to see if they should put a referendum on the ballot. A link to that survey is listed below.

    Related Links—Click below

    View entire article by clicking on following:  Belvidere School District Seeks Input on Sales Tax Increase

    Here are the survey questions:  Click on the photocopy to enlarge.

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    Monday, July 2, 2012

    Rockford Register Star’s feature on District 100 sales tax proposal

    I hope everyone has an opportunity to read this article in Sunday. July 1, 2012 Rockford Register Star.  It perhaps is the best summary of the district’s budget woes I have ye seen.  Unfortunately it is not available on the internet.

    Here a couple of the graphic presentations from the RR Star graph's of bonds 7-1-2012feature.