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February 8, 2018
Ag2School Credit Offers Tax Relief in ISD 318 Referendum

The 40 percent agricultural bond credit known as Ag2School took effect in 2018. This credit benefits owners of farm land and some timber land. If the ISD 318 ballot questions are successful in April, the Ag2School credit would apply to 11.5% of the property value of the district. 

In ISD 318, Ag2School will reduce 2018 property taxes by $78.90 annually on agricultural or timber land with a value of $500,000. This will total an estimated $151,541 of tax relief annually for qualified land owners in ISD 318. That tax relief would apply each year until the bonds are paid off.

“We’re pleased that the state has recognized the need to balance educational needs of our children without placing an undue burden on our farmers and timber owners,” said Ben Hawkins, ISD 318 Board Member and former Business Manager.

This agricultural bond credit passed into law in June of 2017 and continues to have a broad base of bipartisan support. It is a permanent law meant to benefit both schools and owners of qualified property.

“Repealing or reducing the program would mean a vote for raising taxes on the backs on rural Minnesota farmers and harming equity in school funding for kids and parents,” said Sam Walseth, Director of Legislative Affairs for MREA. “Not only is this extremely unlikely, but the strong coalition of like-minded rural interests (MREA, farm groups and others) would link arms to defeat any attempt to renege on the 40 percent credit to farmers for school facilities for rural children’s education.”

The ISD 318 School Board has proposed a two-part facility plan that would address elementary and activity needs in the school district. The plan includes two new neighborhood elementary schools in Grand Rapids, a renovated and expanded Cohasset school, and major improvements to activity and athletic facilities in Bigfork and throughout the district.

For the owner of a home valued at $150,000, the tax impact of all of these improvements is estimated to be $8.30 per month. 

If you own agricultural or timber land, it is recommended you contact Ehlers, the district's financial advisor, to receive a customized estimate of the tax impact on your parcels. For more information about how the proposed referendum will affect your taxes, call Ehlers at 1-800-552-1171 and ask to speak to any member of the Education Team. You may also send an e-mail message to .