The Arkansas Department of Education (ADE) received the County Treasurer’s Ad Valorem Tax Report – 2011 Summary (2011 County Treasurer’s Report) as required by Ark. Code Ann. § 26-80-101. School districts were notified of the preliminary findings in Commissioner’s Memo #FIN-12-082 and given until March 30, 2012, to reconcile district accounting records to the reported county data. The updated Net Revenues Received by School Districts during Calendar Year 2011 Report reflecting revisions submitted through March 30, 2012, has been posted to the ADE website at: http://arkansased.org/about/reports.html under the “Other Reports” section (replacing the March 6, 2012, report with the same name).
State foundation funding aid was initially calculated and distributed based on 98% collection of the 25 mills uniform rate of tax (URT). According to Ark. Code Ann. § 6-20-2305 (a)(4), the ADE shall recoup the net revenues in excess of 98% of the 25 mills uniform rate of tax (URT) or shall distribute a URT adjustment, if needed, to bring the district total foundation funding to the statutory requirement.
Based on the data provided on the 2011 County Treasurer’s Report, the ADE calculated the fiscal year 2011-2012 URT adjustment to bring each district’s total foundation funding to the per student foundation funding amount of $6,144 multiplied by the fiscal year 2010-2011 three-quarter average daily membership. Please see the attached file, “Final URT Calculations,” for this computation. Each district’s URT adjustment is listed in Column K on this file. These adjustments are the result of subtracting the Total Revenue Received (Column J) from the FY12 Foundation Funding Amount Due to District (Column D). Positive adjustments indicate the amount of URT adjustment due to the district. These payments are expected to disburse before May 31, 2012. Negative adjustment amounts with no asterisk indicate the required repayment of funds in excess of 98% of the 25 mills uniform rate of tax (URT). Please note with regard to those school districts (indicated by an asterisk) that collected URT revenues in excess of the foundation funding amount, the issue of recoupment is currently before the Arkansas Supreme Court for review. This Commissioner’s Memo and its accompanying data are not to be construed as a demand for the repayment of any monies from those school districts.
Arkansas Code Ann. § 6-20-2305(a)(4)(C)(ii) provides that if an irregular distribution of excess commissions (more than one distribution in the same reporting period) causes a school district’s property tax disbursement rate from the URT to exceed ninety-eight percent (98%), the ADE may adjust the URT and apply the excess distribution to the following school year. Arkansas Code Ann. § 6-20-2305(a)(4)(C)(iii) further allows for the adjustment of any revenues reported in both the prior year and the current year data. To make either of these adjustments, the ADE requires each district to certify, along with the County Treasurer, the amount of excess commission payments made and/or the amount of duplicated revenues reported on the 2011 County Treasurer’s Report. The deadline to submit the certification is June 4, 2012. Once received, the ADE will review the documentation and notify your district of the revised amount.
Questions concerning the reported data may be directed to Amy Thomas at Amy.Thomas@Arkansas.gov or 501-682-4494 or Cindy Hedrick Hollowell at Cindy.Hedrick@Arkansas.gov or 501-682-4484.