Milford Residents Get Unexpected Tax Hike from "Tuition Tax" - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Milford Residents Get Unexpected Tax Hike from "Tuition Tax"

Posted: Updated:
Students were hard at work on the first day at Lulo Ross Elementary. The tuition cost can not be used for general expenses within the district (Source: WBOC) Students were hard at work on the first day at Lulo Ross Elementary. The tuition cost can not be used for general expenses within the district (Source: WBOC)

MILFORD, Del. - Neighbors in Milford got a pretty substantial surprise on their latest tax bill, as their "Tuition Tax" skyrocketed over one year. The Milford School District told WBOC that these costs directly correlated with the increasing number of students in need. 

"We had a rise this past year," said Superintendent Kevin Dickerson. "As far the number of students that needed the services outside our district and also increasing costs within those places as well. So yes, this is a tax rate that is very difficult to predict year to year. It's a tax rate that has a lot of variance in year to year."

The Milford School District levies four different types of taxes, including two that must go to referendum, and two that do not. Increases to the "Current Operating Expenses" tax and the "Debt Service" tax must go to referendum, whereas the "Tuition Tax" and the "Match Tax" can be raised or lowered at the discretion of the school board. 

According to the district, the Tuition Tax "provides revenue to pay tuition costs of Milford School District students with special needs who must attend special schools within and outside of the State of Delaware."  Due to increasing need, the district set the total amount of funds from the Tuition Tax to $3.5 million for FY 2017, an increase of more than $1 million compared to what was projected in 2015. 

Two of the more expensive schools students were sent to were the Sussex Consortium in Lewes and the Howard T. Ennis School in Georgetown. According to data provided by the Milford School District, 30 students are expected to go to the Sussex Consortium at a cost of $42,530 each. Meanwhile, 15 students are expected to go to Howard T. Ennis, at a cost of $29,150 each. Between those two schools alone, the district is paying more than $1.7 million. 

The district is also paying for 20 students to enroll in the Sussex County Opportunity Program (SCOPE), which is located at the Woodbridge School District. This program "deals with student discipline problems and emotionally disturbed students in grade 6 through 12."  Between tuition and transportation costs, the SCOPE program cost the district more than $155,000. 

According to the district there are in between 340 and 350 students who are currently benefiting from the Tuition Tax. 

"A tuition tax is important for us," said Dickerson. "To be able to provide the best service for our students. We have many students here who have needs. Special needs that we need to accommodate. And sometimes there are better settings outside of our district who can we do that than we can inside our district at this time."

This increase to the tuition tax happened at the same time as an increase to the Operating Expenses Tax kicked in. This increase of $1.5 million was approved by Milford neighbors during an October referendum. 

  • Delmarvawide NewsDelmarvawide NewsMore>>

  • Trial Nears for Alleged Leader of Delaware Criminal Network

    Trial Nears for Alleged Leader of Delaware Criminal Network

    Wednesday, August 23 2017 4:48 AM EDT2017-08-23 08:48:13 GMT
    Wednesday, August 23 2017 4:48 AM EDT2017-08-23 08:48:13 GMT
    Steven Kellam (Photo: Delaware State Police)Steven Kellam (Photo: Delaware State Police)
    A judge is holding a final case review in the prosecution of the alleged ringleader of an organized crime gang that operated in central and southern Delaware.More
    A judge is holding a final case review in the prosecution of the alleged ringleader of an organized crime gang that operated in central and southern Delaware.More
  • Queen Anne's Co. Hosting Tornado Recovery Town Hall

    Queen Anne's Co. Hosting Tornado Recovery Town Hall

    Wednesday, August 23 2017 3:30 AM EDT2017-08-23 07:30:21 GMT
    Wednesday, August 23 2017 3:30 AM EDT2017-08-23 07:30:21 GMT
    In the wake of an EF2 tornado in Queen Anne's County in July, the county is hosting a town hall meeting Wednesday to determine how the recovery process is going.More
    In the wake of an EF2 tornado in Queen Anne's County in July, the county is hosting a town hall meeting Wednesday to determine how the recovery process is going.More
  • Riverdale Man Arrested for Dover Robbery

    Riverdale Man Arrested for Dover Robbery

    08/22/2017 21:41:00 -04:002017-08-23 01:41:00 GMT
    Tuesday, August 22 2017 9:42 PM EDT2017-08-23 01:42:44 GMT
    Micah CosbyMicah Cosby
    DOVER, Del.- A Riverdale man was arrested for the robbery of a TD Bank in Dover on Monday, according to Dover Police. Officials said 34-year-old Micah Cosby gave the teller of the bank on North DuPont Highway a note that demanded money.More
    A man from Riverdale, Maryland was arrested for the robbery of a TD Bank in Dover on Monday, according to Dover Police.More
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Neighbors React to Easton Recovery Home

    Neighbors React to Easton Recovery Home

    Tuesday, August 22 2017 5:27 PM EDT2017-08-22 21:27:16 GMT
    Tuesday, August 22 2017 5:27 PM EDT2017-08-22 21:27:16 GMT
    It's a small and quiet blue house - but it's caused quite the uproar.More
    It's a small and quiet blue house - but it's caused quite the uproar.More
  • Scheduled Jet to Land at Salisbury Airport Tuesday

    Scheduled Jet to Land at Salisbury Airport Tuesday

    08/22/2017 15:59:00 -04:002017-08-22 19:59:00 GMT
    Tuesday, August 22 2017 3:59 PM EDT2017-08-22 19:59:10 GMT
    The first scheduled jet will land in Salisbury, Maryland on Tuesday night.More
    The first scheduled jet will land in Salisbury, Maryland on Tuesday night.More
  • Pocomoke Man Leads Deputy on Brief Chase

    Pocomoke Man Leads Deputy on Brief Chase

    Tuesday, August 22 2017 5:50 PM EDT2017-08-22 21:50:55 GMT
    Tuesday, August 22 2017 5:50 PM EDT2017-08-22 21:50:55 GMT
    A Dover woman was arrested after providing officers with a fake name.A Dover woman was arrested after providing officers with a fake name.
    SNOW HILL, Md.- A Pocomoke man has been arrested after a brief pursuit on Friday.According to the Worcester County Sheriff's Office, a deputy attempted to stop 36-year-old Tremayne Rogers for speeding on Route 113 near Snow Hill.Rogers failed to stop, anMore
    SNOW HILL, Md.- A Pocomoke man has been arrested after a brief pursuit on Friday.According to the Worcester County Sheriff's Office, a deputy attempted to stop 36-year-old Tremayne Rogers for speeding on Route 113 near Snow Hill.Rogers failed to stop, anMore
  • Most Popular VideosMost Popular VideosMore>>

  • Neighbors React to Easton Recovery Home

    Neighbors React to Easton Recovery Home

    The Humble House has some neighbors like Michael Engels more than just worried.

    "The last thing I want to do is to find out there's a halfway house within walking distance from where my children will be playing and living," Engels said.

    Upset with what's just down the street, Engels says he's considering moving.

    More

    The Humble House has some neighbors like Michael Engels more than just worried.

    "The last thing I want to do is to find out there's a halfway house within walking distance from where my children will be playing and living," Engels said.

    Upset with what's just down the street, Engels says he's considering moving.

    More
  • Scheduled Jet to Land at Salisbury Airport Tuesday, Part 3

    Scheduled Jet to Land at Salisbury Airport Tuesday, Part 3

    It took more than two decades to get to the Salisbury Wicomico Airport to where it is. WBOC's Chris Weimer spoke with former airport manager Bob Bryant about the history of the airport's expansion.

    More

    It took more than two decades to get to the Salisbury Wicomico Airport to where it is. WBOC's Chris Weimer spoke with former airport manager Bob Bryant about the history of the airport's expansion.

    More
  • Law Enforcement Warns Against the Use of Dirt Bike's on Salisbury's Streets

    Law Enforcement Warns Against the Use of Dirt Bike's on Salisbury's Streets

    Law enforcement warns against the dangers of dirt biking on public streets.

    With the warmer weather, police said they have seen an uptick in dirt biking throughout Salisbury.

    Lieutenant Jason King from the Salisbury Police Department said, "A lot of times they aren't paying attention to traffic on the roadway and people who may be walking in neighborhoods and its just not safe to do those kind of things."

    More

    Law enforcement warns against the dangers of dirt biking on public streets.

    With the warmer weather, police said they have seen an uptick in dirt biking throughout Salisbury.

    Lieutenant Jason King from the Salisbury Police Department said, "A lot of times they aren't paying attention to traffic on the roadway and people who may be walking in neighborhoods and its just not safe to do those kind of things."

    More
Powered by Frankly

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2017 WBOC. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices