Several school districts would be the biggest winners of tax revenue from a pipeline project proposed to cross Wood County.
Figures from the county auditor’s office show more detail about how roughly $10.7 million in Wood County taxes paid by the Rover Pipeline would be distributed locally.
Earlier this year, the trustees of townships in line to receive some of that money expressed reluctance to believe it without more information on how they might be given ad valorem taxes, which would be based on the value of the pipeline.
Company officials told the Sentinel-Tribune last year that the money would be divided by the five townships where the dual 42-inch pipeline would run, but the auditor’s estimates show a much more widespread impact.
A public relations representative for Rover insisted that the company’s previous estimates included the overall benefit to Henry, Bloom, Milton, Jackson and Perry townships; however, the figures given to the Sentinel during a meeting last year referenced no impact to schools or other agencies, only listing the townships themselves as tax beneficiaries.
“The estimations provided earlier were a total number that includes all entities within the township that will receive tax revenue, including much-needed revenue for school districts, not just specific to the township itself,” Vicki Anderson Granado stated in an email.
As calculated by the auditor based on local tax rates, $6.9 million per year of the total would go to schools. Money would become available in 2018, and amounts are rounded to the nearest dollar:
• Elmwood, $3,199,316
• Bowling Green, $1,935,176
• North Baltimore, $1,064,411
• Penta Career Center, $451,511
• McComb, $240,353
The townships would split about $1.1 million annually as follows:
• Henry, $319,843
• Bloom, $282,854
• Milton, $200,437
• Jackson, $158,833
• Perry, $136,746
Libraries in Wayne, Wood County and North Baltimore would also get a small bump of $86,702.33, $40,499.55 and $44,148.96 respectively.
County agencies with existing levies would share in the funds. In addition to the county’s general fund, which would receive $348,622.50 per year, certain groups would get annual payments of:
• Wood Lane, $1,431,578
• Wood County Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services, $385,710
• Wood County Park District, $148,350
• Wood County Committee on Aging, $103,845
• Wood County Job and Family Services, $96,428
• Wood County Health District, $74,175
• Wood County Historical Center, $7,418
In sum, the auditor’s calculations vary from the total estimate provided by Rover by about $2,500.
Auditor Michael Sibbersen said he and Karen Young, chief deputy auditor, worked with limited information, as the company would not provide the estimated value it used for the pipeline in its own estimates of total tax revenues.
“They tell us it’s based on a per-mile calculation,” on how much of the line crosses a particular area, “but they would not tell us what tax rate they used, they would not tell us what value it’s based on.
“We were trying to obtain further information to give us a greater confidence with what we were trying to do, but we weren’t really getting successful in getting additional information,” Sibbersen said.