M&O Reauthorization 2011
On Tuesday, November 8, 2011, an election was held in the Marana Unified School District. Registered voters had the opportunity to decide an important matter for the school district.
Proposition 400: Maintenance & Operation Budget Override Reauthorization requested voter authorization to continue the current 10% Maintenance and Operation budget increase approved by voters in 2007, which was scheduled to phase down by one-third for each of the next three years.
Continuing the budget override was not a request for new funding or programs. The budget override shall be funded from a levy of taxes on the taxable property within the District and be in effect for a period of seven years.
The budget override will not create a new tax. In fact the District has continued to lower secondary tax rates since 2007. Upon reauthorization, the estimated associated tax rate will remain approximately equal to the existing tax rate. View Tax Information
If the override was not approved by the voters, the District would have experienced unavoidable increases in class size, and the elimination or reduction in the level of classroom and District support services in multiple areas including but not limited to the following:
- School aides
- Physical education
- Fine Arts
- Extra-curricular Activities
- Remedial, Elective Courses, and Advanced classes.
Information Pamphlet and Sample Ballot
Print MUSD Fact Sheet
View PowerPoint presented by Dr. Wilson, Superintendent, during Sept. 2011 Public Forum
Arizona Public Media, reporter Michael Chihak, explores the issues of school financing and budget overrides in the October 28 issue of Arizona Week. Three school officials in the state, including Dr. Wilson MUSD Superintendent, are interviewed. Watch Now
Questions & Answers
What is a M&O budget override?
Arizona State law sets strict statewide limits on the amount which school districts can spend on the
education of students. Arizona State Law also allows school districts to increase their Maintenance and Operation (M&O) budget up to 15% of the state formula (Revenue Control Limit) if approved by the voters of the district. MUSD is requesting voter reauthorization for the current 10% override and not seeking the statutory limit of 15%. The Revenue Control Limit is a state formula that determines how much funding school districts are allowed to spend each year. An override is fully funded for the first five years, and then decreases by one-third each year, unless reauthorized.
What is a M&O budget override used for?
An override supports day to day maintenance and operation expenditures of a school district such as utilities, paper and other supplies, salary and benefits of employees, and miscellaneous expenditures not of a capital nature.
Why does a school district ask for voter approval to increase its operating budget?
An override is a direct way for a local community to help provide funding for local schools. Increasing the operating budget allows a school district to provide a higher quality education, offer programs and services to better meet the needs of students, and adequately prepare children to be successful contributing members of the community.
When did Marana voters authorize this override?
In May 2007, voters approved the current 10% M&O override. The override will phase out by one-third beginning next fiscal year (2012-2013). Voters will decide in November whether to continue the current M&O override.
Why is there another election to approve the current override?
Arizona law only allows school districts to receive voter approval for a M&O override for up to five years, before the override begins to phase out. In order to fully maintain the continuity of an override, an election must be held every five years.
What is the difference between a Bond election and a M&O override election?
Bonds are a debt instrument, approved by the voters, which are secured by a school district and paid back over time using tax dollars. Bonds allow school districts to fund capital projects such as school buses, facility construction, renovations and repairs, computers, security systems. Bonds cannot be used for M&O expenses.
An override allows school districts to increase their Maintenance and Operations budget if the voters of the district approve by election. An override supports day to day maintenance and operation expenditures such as utilities, paper and other supplies, salary and benefits of employees, and miscellaneous expenditures not of a capital nature. Overrides cannot be used for Bond projects.
Where does the funding for budget overrides come from?
Overrides are entirely funded by the levy of taxes on the secondary assessed value of property located within the District.
Will the override cause the tax levy on property located within the District to increase?
No. The renewal of the budget override will not create a new tax. In fact the District has continued to lower secondary tax rates since 2007. Upon reauthorization, the estimated associated tax rate will remain approximately equal to the existing tax rate. View Tax Information
Will property taxes decrease if the override is not reauthorized?
Yes. If the override is not reauthorized the secondary property tax rate will decrease by 0.28 annually for each of the next three years. In the first year, this translates to $28.00 per year for a home with a $100,000 assessed value ($2.33 per month). In the second year, this translates to $56.00 per year for a home with a $100,000 assess value ($4.66 per month).
What is the current M&O override used for?
The voters supported the current M&O Override in May 2007 to assist the District in carrying out their strategic plan, Roadmap to Excellence. The current override is still used for maintenance of class sizes, nursing and counseling staff, additional school staff positions to enhance instruction and student programs, athletics, extracurricular and fine arts.
How much funding does the M&O override provide to MUSD?
The override provides $6,400,000 annually to the Maintenance & Operation budget.
What will happen if the M&O override continuation is not approved by voters in November?
If the override is not reauthorized, the District will experience unavoidable increases in class size and the elimination or reduction in the level of classroom and support services it currently provides students in the following areas:
· School aides
· Physical education
· Fine Arts
· Extra-curricular Activities
· Remedial, Elective Courses, and Advanced classes.
How long will the override last if approved in November?
If the M&O budget override is reauthorized by the voters in November, it will last seven years, but will begin to phase out in year six.