Manatee County to consider renewing ad valorem tax for school district

The measure, if renewed, would keep boosting funding for Manatee County schools/.
The measure, if renewed, would keep boosting funding for Manatee County schools/.(Shane Battis)
Published: Oct. 29, 2021 at 4:24 PM EDT
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MANATEE COUNTY, Fla. (WWSB) - The general election is coming next week and on the ballot is an ad valorem sales tax.

It’s a measure that, if renewed, would continue funding Manatee County schools.

Electra Lee Magnet Middle School Teacher Starloe Galletta said in the past three years the sales tax has helped her school make big improvements. She said in that time, the tax boosted teacher salaries by about $5,000 per year.

It’s also increasing salaries for other staff members.

On top of that, the school has been able to buy better tech for the students. She said those resources have helped the middle school jump in rankings from 33rd to 22nd.

“That ranking not only effects what we are able to achieve within our schools so that if A and B are right on target with what we want to show the state,” Galletta said. “And it also guides new homeowners to the neighborhoods where successful schools are.”

Of course, not everyone is in favor.

The Manatee County sheriff has spoken out against renewing the sales tax because he believes not enough of the money is going to teacher and staff salaries.

Voters can choose to renew or end the ad valorem sales tax in the Nov. 2 general election.

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