New software creates some confusion for union district taxpayers

 County official stresses that property tax bills are correct

By Jennifer Eisenbart


When some people living in union school districts opened their tax bills this week, they may have been confused about what appeared to be large percentage changes in the local school tax.

The tax bills are correct, county officials stressed. But the percentage increase shown for the Waterford and Union Grove high school districts is misleading due to new software that calculates the bills differently 2014.

The tax levy in both of those districts actually changed very little. However, because the new software now applies the state school tax credit to both the high school and elementary school districts in the union areas, the percentages are skewed from the 2013 bill, which applied the credit to just the high school districts.

“The percentage is comparing apples to oranges,” Racine County Register of Deeds Tyson Fettes said.

“Now (the tax credit) is accurately on both.”

Essentially, it’s a one-year glitch that will result in a more accurate comparison for next year and beyond, Fettes said.

While the percentage comparison for the union school districts on this year’s bill is off kilter, the amount of the actual tax on the bill is correct.

And for most people, Fettes said, the tax bills are less overall in 2014.

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