FY 2021 School Referendum: will be on the ballot on November 3. The referendum proposes a one percent increase in sales tax. We are urging you to vote Yes for Northampton Schools on election day. The tax will fund the planned renovations to the high school and the creation of a middle school with a one percent increase in sales tax.
Revenues raised with this sales tax can be used only for school construction and renovation. The tax will not apply to items such as medicines, groceries and farm equipment.
A committee has already been established to assure that schools are kept up so that they will remain in good condition going forward.
Approximately 1.4 million dollars per year will be raised with this one percent increase and 45% of that will be paid by those visiting our County.
An alternative would be an increase in property tax for all County property owners.
Before Covid, most of us would be in favor. But now, is the timing for this tax appropriate?
Online learning providers are seeing a boom in enrollment as parents seek an alternative to chaotic remote school experiences this spring.
A new survey estimates that Virginia’s public schools are down 36,000 students which could result in a loss of nearly $160 million. We are seeing a large decrease here in Northampton. More than 60% have opted for online education.
In Northampton, enrollment is down, and over 60% of students are online, with the remainder doing some sort of “hybrid” mix. The school Superintendent has even stated that kids have only come to school once, hardly a ringing endorsement.
The coronavirus has fundamentally altered the nature of public schools. Before throwing millions of dollars at it, it may be fiscally prudent to see where we are one or two years from now first.