Tucson Unified School District's Desegregation Fund In Jeopardy
The second largest school district in Arizona says it cannot afford to lose out on millions of dollars needed to fund its court mandated desegregation programs.
For nearly 40 years Tucson Unified School District has relied on a complicated property tax formula to pay for the multi-million dollar court ordered programs.
State lawmakers allowed Pima County to collect the desegregation taxes, totaling $64 million annually, through property taxes, bonds and overrides. But, caps placed on primary property taxes have forced the state to cover a $16 million to $18 million shortfall.
This year, lawmakers switched that burden to homeowners in Pima County, which at least one supervisor has called unconstitutional.
Tucson Unified’s Superintendent says it will cripple their public schools if county administrators refuse to collect the property tax.