Tax rate increase for a local county

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Reporter - Mychaela Bruner
Photographer - David Dycus

GRAVES COUNTY, Ky. - State budget cuts to a local school system could mean higher taxes. The budget for Graves County schools has been reduced by $4.5 million over the last five years.

Now, the school board is proposing a tax rate hike, which could mean about 11-cents a day more for the average tax payer. Superintendent Kim Harrison said the county's tax rate is the 9th lowest in the state and a hike is needed to help students.

Harrison said the Graves County Schools need attention. "We are an extremely successful district academically and I don't want to see that go back. I think one of the things that contribute to that is how our kids are taken care of," said Harrison.

Harrison said if problems like this are fixed, kids will know faculty members care and they will also care to learn.

"I don't like taxes, I'm just like everybody else. But, I love our kids of Graves County more and this is about the future," said Harrison.

The Lowe's Elementary school dates back to the 1950's and faculty said it is in desperate need of renovation. But, people in the community are speaking out and think before the tax rate takes affect, it should be voted on.

Terry Sims is petitioning against the tax rate and think the community should have a right to vote on it.

"This is the fight of the people of Graves County against a school system that has misused their money and took our money and done everything else but build classrooms," said Sims.

Graves County Schools have had to cut back on textbooks, tutoring, technology, transportation and safe schools. October 6th is the deadline for the petition, which needs more than 1,000 signatures to get the tax rate increase on the ballot.

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