Bellwood-Antis taxes on a costly trend

A recent article in the Altoona Mirror indicated that the Bellwood-Antis School Board is considering the possibility (or probability) of the ninth consecutive year of millage increases.

It is interesting that this does not cause any concern on the part of the residents of Bellwood-Antis.

Utilizing the Right to Know laws, information was requested relating to the record of our school board for the last 10 years. Perhaps some of what was found would be of interest to the taxpayers of Bellwood-Antis.

In the 10 years beginning 2002-03, Bellwood-Antis millage rate has increased 52 percent. All other districts in the county increased 11 to 29 percent except Spring Cove.

In this period of 52 percent increase, the number of students increased by only seven students.

In the five years beginning 2007-08, the time period affected most by the current administration, millage in Bellwood-Antis increased over 25 percent.

During this period many of the school districts in the county increased less than 10 percent. No district increased as much as Bellwood-Antis. During this time attendance actually decreased by 2 percent.

Surely there are differences between Bellwood-Antis and the Tyrone district. But they had a millage increase in this five year period of 8.1 percent. Their actual millage is 25 percent less than Bellwood-Antis.

There are other questions that a review of the financials of Bellwood-Antis would raise. At least it is time that we as taxpayers start to ask questions. I know my income did not increase to cover these increases.

Walt Dishman