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County School Facilities Sales Tax Information

posted Feb 21, 2018, 9:07 AM by John Pearson

Dear EAWR Parents and Community Members:

In just a few weeks (Tuesday, March 20, 2018), the voters of Madison County will be asked to approve a proposal to provide funding to all county school districts through a 1% sales tax increase. The revenue from this sales tax can only be used to build or renovate school facilities or to make payments on existing bond debt. By Illinois law, this sales tax revenue cannot be used to pay  salaries, benefits, supplies or other operating expenses. EAWR - by conservative estimates - stands to gain an additional $324,000 for facility renovation and tax rate reduction.

The EAWR Board has plans to use the sales tax revenue to: 

Use the CSFST proceeds - instead of issuing bonds - for Health, Life Safety projects in the new 10-year plan, which will include some new roofs, rehabilitation of our student restrooms, replacement of many interior doors, rehabilitation of some science labs, replacement of the wheelchair lift by the Auditorium, and many other projects. So, instead of having property owners pay a higher rate to retire those bonds, we would use the sales tax proceeds to cover that. 

Some of the proceeds would be used to install central air conditioning in the Memorial Gym and some other classroom spaces still without air conditioning. 

In addition, future roof replacements, parking lot and sidewalk renovations and other ongoing renovations will be funded by revenue from the County Schools Facilities Sales Tax (CSFST).  As a result, much of the burden for funding public education facility improvements will be shifted from property taxes to a sales tax. This has the benefit of not only spreading the tax burden to all county residents, but to anyone from outside the county who works or shops in Madison County (Conservative estimates are that 30% of those who pay sales taxes in Madison County reside outside the county).

The Board also has plans that remaining revenues or future revenues not specifically earmarked for building and facility improvements would come back to our loyal taxpayers, in the form of tax rate reductions (sometimes called abatements).

Below is how the ballot will appear on March 20th:

The 1% tax increase is projected to annually generate approximately $324,000 for EAWR District #14. The tax is collected as regular sales tax and is distributed by the Dept. of Revenue to school districts (through the Regional Office in Edwardsville) based on student enrollment. It only goes to school districts and only for the purposes listed in the bullet points below. And, forty-nine (49) Illinois Counties have already passed this measure. 

This 1-cent sales tax goes directly to 

Acceptable Uses for CSFST Revenue:

  • New or remodeled school facilities
  • Additions and renovations        
  • Safety and security improvements          
  • Energy efficiency
  • Paying off building bonds

Unacceptable Uses for CSFST Revenue:

  • Salaries and Benefits
  • Instructional Costs
  • Textbooks and computers
  • Moveable equipment
  • School Buses
  • Operating Costs

 The County School Facility Sales Tax does not apply to:

  • Cars, trucks, ATVs, boats, RVs or mobile homes
  • Unprepared food (groceries)
  • Medicine (prescriptions drugs, vitamins & over the counter drugs)
  • Farm equipment, parts and farm inputs 

Remember … If it is not currently taxed, it will not be taxed 

As March 20th quickly approaches, please make sure you are well informed and do not forget to exercise your right to vote! 


Yours in education, 

Dr. John S. Pearson,


618-254-3151, Ext. 2502