How Will Lakota Fund the Plan?
Knowing a master facilities plan would be adopted by the Board in the near future, Lakota's finance leadership has been laying the groundwork to ease the burden on the taxpayers as much as possible.
The Board of Education may choose to enroll in Ohio's Expedited Local Partnership Program (ELPP). Once accepted, the district would be eligible to begin receiving partial funding from the State for all projects that are completed in the final Master Facilities Plan from that point forward. Right now, it is estimated that this could amount to 29%, or up to $147 million, of financial assistance for the district, so long as the MFP meets state requirements.
By taking advantage of lower interest rates and restructuring its debt, Lakota's finance team has saved taxpayers several million dollars. The district has restructured its debt with the goal to pay it off sooner versus decreasing the millage rate. Lakota has shifted its strategy from lowering millage rates over time to maintaining a consistent millage for a shorter period of time.
The district purposefully restructured its debt to minimize the impact of a new bond issue, which would be required to finance the Master Facilities Plan. The last time Lakota was on the ballot was in 2013.
- Lakota's 25 buildings are valued at more than $632 million.
- The average age of Lakota's facilities is 32 years old.
- By 2040, 10 buildings will be 50+ years old
- Lakota's two high schools are the oldest in Butler County.
- Enrollment is over 17,000 and continues to grow, outpacing long-term predictions from 2019.