The bill requires a school district to distribute revenue it receives from ongoing local property tax mill levies equally, on a per-student basis, to the school district charter schools. Under specified circumstances, the school district may distribute the revenue using a different calculation. The bill does not require a school district to redistribute to charter schools any amount of the mill levy revenue that it distributed in budget years before the 2017-18 budget year.
The requirement to distribute local property tax mill levy revenue to the district charter schools is phased in over 3 years starting in the 2018-19 budget year. In that year, a school district must calculate the per-student amount based on 33% of the amount of local property tax revenue collected. In the 2019-20 budget year, the per-student amount is calculated based on 66% of the amount of revenue collected. In the 2020-21 budget year and each budget year thereafter, the per-student amount is calculated based on 100% of the amount of revenue collected. But, if a school district in the 2016-17 budget year distributed to the district charter schools more than the amount required for the 2018-19 budget year or the 2019-20 budget year, it must continue distributing the higher amount in each of those budget years.
A school district may place a question on the ballot in the next school district election after the bill passes asking the school district voters whether they want the school district to distribute to the district charter schools the amount of local property tax mill levy revenue that was approved before July 1, 2017, as required in the bill. If a majority votes 'no', the local school board may choose whether to distribute any portion of the local property tax mill levy revenue to the district charter schools. If a majority votes 'yes', then the local school board must distribute the local property tax mill levy revenue to the district charter schools as required in the bill. The election does not apply to any local property tax mill levies that are approved on or after July 1, 2017.
The bill creates the mill levy equalization fund for charter schools authorized by the state charter school institute (institute charter schools). The general assembly chooses whether to appropriate money to the fund. The department of education is required to distribute any amount appropriated to the institute charter schools on a per-pupil basis in recognition of the institute charter schools' inability to access any amount of local property tax mill levy revenue.
(Note: This summary applies to the reengrossed version of this bill as introduced in the second house.)