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School district approves levy

The Lake Oswego School Board on Monday voted to place a renewal of the district's five-year local option levy on the ballot for the Nov. 4 ballot.

The measure will ask voters if the local option levy should be renewed at the same rate for 2010 to 2015.

The district's current local option levy, which provides more than 10 percent of the district's general operating budget for instructional programs and operations, will expire at the end of June 2010.

The local option levy renewal would continue at the same rate of $1.39 per $1,000 of assessed value. The owner of a home with an assessed value of $500,000 would continue to pay $58 per month, or $695 per year, in property taxes for the local option levy.

The board also gave Lake Oswego School Board Superintendent Bill Korach direction to develop an information campaign about the levy.

The levy supports school operations, such as teachers and classified employees.

'Because it's a national election, we believe voter turnout will be very good,' he said.

Korach also pointed out that in 2010, the district will be retiring a school renovation bond. Retiring that debt will mean a reduction in the district's tax rate of 25 cents per $1,000 assessed value, or $125 a year for a $500,000 home.

That 20-year bond paid for several major district elementary school renovations, including Oak Creek Elementary. State legislation provides individual school districts with the authority to ask voters for a limited amount of local funding to supplement the state funding provided for schools.

Voters in the Lake Oswego School District approved its first local option levy in May 2000. Korach said the district will have available detailed information to share with voters regarding the local option levy, the district's operating budget and funding history.