Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Mo' Money? JPS Collects Record Property Taxes

The Jackson Public School District hauled in a record amount of property taxes in 2017 even though student enrollment continued to decline.   The annual audit states that JPS collected $95.4 million in property taxes while  enrollment fell to 26,206 students.

The chart below shows property taxes that fund JPS increased from $78.7 million in 2007 to $95.4 million in 2017 - an increase of 21%. 



Meanwhile, the student population declined 16% as it fell from 31,191 students in 2007 to 26,206 students in 2018.




JJ created a new statistic last year: Annual property tax revenue per student.  It rose $1,117 since 2007, an increase of 44%.


There are those who claim that JPS suffers because it is not a so-called "wealthy" school district.  Maybe so but JPS collects more property tax revenue that it ever has and more than any other school district in Mississippi.

These figures are somewhat at odds with a rather foolish column written by the Executive Director of Operation Shoestring and published in the Clarion-Ledger last year.  One excerpt spells out the myths told about JPS:


JPS is reckoning with decades of systematic disinvestment in it and its community. On top of that, JPS has to cope with extremely high rates of family poverty among its students, a declining tax base that affects school funding and, correspondingly, aging and dilapidated capital infrastructure. In short, the odds have been stacked against them for a while. Column.

JPS already has the highest millage rate in the Jackson metro area.  It collected more property taxes than any other public school district in Mississippi and collects more per student than similar-sized public school districts?  Where exactly is the disinvestment mentioned in Robert Langford's column? He finished his column with this advice:

 I urge you to think hard about how we, with all of Jackson’s challenges and opportunities, ensure that we can build a school system and a community that keeps children safe and provides them a top-quality education so they can realize their dreams and potential.
 Perhaps it is Mr. Langford who should try some actual thinking.  There is one word that is not mentioned in his column that operated on a shoestring of facts: accountability.  Only 38% of the employees at JPS are teachers. Meanwhile 55% of the employees at Desoto and 50% at Rankin are teachers.  Their central office staff is a fraction of the nearly thousand employees that populate the JPS central office.  Then there is the kicker: JPS spends $2,000 per student more than Desoto.  Mr. Langford never seems to mention anything about holding the leaders of JPS accountable for anything.  However, it's easier to insult the community than actually examine the facts and think.


Keep this post in mind when deciding whether to support the $65 million school bond referendum.




Kingfish note: The numbers get even worse when compared to Desoto County Public Schools.





30 comments:

Anonymous said...

Fellow Jacksonians:

Vote HELL NO.

You don't give a drug addict more money because he says he wants to quit. Tough love is the way to go.

Anonymous said...

I am more interested in exactly how they had a 7% increase in students in 2015. Surely that is strictly because their way of counting changed.

Anonymous said...

MDE please interview JPS employees and make it unknown to JPS higher ups who said what. You will see just how bad it is.

Good job Kingfish, keep digging.

Greater NE Jackson JPS people, you don't get how bad it is in the rest of the district, so quit defending it.

LeftOver Resident said...

Thanks Phil! I didn't vote for Guest today. Not that I think Hughes is a great candidate. No, I protested your hanging NEJax Republicans out to dry when it comes to JPS. You want our campaign contributions, you want us to host campaign events in our homes and you want our votes but you clearly don't give a shit about our economics inside of Jackson. Screw you Phil.

Anonymous said...

Got news for you @1:54.
MSGOP establishment sees Jacktown Repubs as (thinning herd) cash cows.
Their ONLY interest is milking you.
They don't even need your paltry votes to win statewide & Fed elections.

Anonymous said...


KF makes his usual excellent points with data to back them up.

Unfortunately, the real message here is TOTAL incompetence.

No amount of money can fix the stupidity of the JPS administration.


Anonymous said...

3:10...don't forget these thinning cash cows vote! In the last presidential election, there were as many votes for the GOP candidate in Hinds County as there were in Madison county. It may not be as white as it used to be percentage wise, but Hinds is still in the top 5 or 6 as far as the raw number of republican voters. Write them off at your own peril.

Anonymous said...

There is fuzzy math coming out of the JPS spin meister$.

Anonymous said...

Is that about $3000 per student? If it is, I am surprised education I that inexpensive?

Anonymous said...

From the report: "On top of that, JPS has to cope with extremely high rates of family poverty among its students..."

As unfortunate as that reality may be, what's it got to do with school funding? Solving 'family poverty' is not among a public school district's responsibilities or reasons to exist.

Let's get to the nut-cuttin'! The reason JPS administration exists and gets dressed most days is for no other reason than to ensure an unusually high monthly PERS check each month and a fat as hell 13th annual check following years of pissing in the wind and dusting off a desk name plate.

The first thing each of them does each morning and the last thing during bourbon hour each evening is calculate how many days they can cash in at retirement and how many untaken sick days can be used to reach another year under the PERS formula.

Anonymous said...

You need some remedial help with reading comprehension @4:14.

Anonymous said...

Sick leave balances should never be allowed to be included in PERS retirement benefits/calculations. Sick leave is there to use for sickness, and nothing else.

Can you say corruption? Banana republic?

Anonymous said...

5:39 are you posting under the wrong article? You may be right but I think it’s a bit off point.

Anonymous said...

I voted for baby chokwe... I live in NE Jackson and I'm a white male voter. I will never again cast another vote for this guy. Total $#!t show... Lumomba admit it your a little bit@# and you can't stand up to this JPS bond. Not too young just simply not man enough. Grow a set and stop being a total pu$$y.

Anonymous said...

Those in charge of JPS are complete idiots. Good thing they can't read otherwise they would be on this thread defending themselves. As soon as some one tells me they work with JPS I know they're idiots. Apart from the teachers that just are at the mercy of these clowns.

Anonymous said...

I would not call it 'corruption'. The legislature created the rules by which the State Personnel Board operates. Don't forget, some employers also allow you to 'cash out' personal days or what some call vacation days, at termination. No employer in Mississippi is required by federal or state employment law to grant sick, personal or vacation leave.

But, the point made at 4:55 is most in education admin jobs sit on their thumbs and run these numbers at least weekly if not daily.

Anonymous said...

7:09 PM - I was commenting on a previous comment at 4:55 PM. :)

Anonymous said...

1:40pm MDE did this last year and issued hundreds of pages of corrective actions required. They can't do anything to fix this problem without take-over authority. The State Board voted to do this back in 10/17 based on the Gov's assurance that he would sign the emergency declaration. He did not. Then he made a deal with the Mayor. How's that working out?? #ItsNotBetterPhil

Perkn said...

i want to know who is the qscb debt esrow agent. he made 2.5 million on a 15 million job. does any jps friendly want to talk about corruption? before the new bond issue, jps will pay 35 million in 10 years on bond intrest, and they have 0 dollars coming in on investments. great leadership jps. NOT!!! VOTE NO!!

Anonymous said...

Adjust the figures for inflation if you want to make an argument. Otherwise it's just gibberish.

$2,522 in 2007 dollars is $3,060 in 2018 dollars. Thus, it's a spending increase of $579 per student, not $1,179. It's an increase of 16 percent, not 44 percent.

Maybe the argument stands regardless, but y'all are fucking idiots for not seeing this immediately.

Perkn said...

kf, i wish you could find out how many of the tax PAYERS in jackson send/sent their children to public schools. i feel like jackson wastes my tax dollars. streets, sewer, water, schools, city hall(permit and water dept) suck!!! whats to look forward to? mayors cup? we cant get there through all the pot holes and water leaks

Anonymous said...

The JPS website is well designed. Check it out.

Perkn said...

stacey, do something before you leave. or josh, look with eyes wide open, and do something, or you'll look like a fool too.

Anonymous said...

10:34 - Nothing like a well designed website, right? Kinda like putting lipstick on Northpark Mall. Or painting the buildings in Yazoo City a variety of vibrant colors. Or new hinges on an outhouse door. Who is so foolish as to be tricked by a website design?

Anonymous said...

I wonder if the real issue with JPS is investment. If a parent has to pay big bucks then they want the best education their kids can get and they'll see to it that they do their homework, get to school on time, learn while they're there, etc. because they've made a major investment to get that education. If school costs you nothing, if it's just handed to you along with everything else, then you're going to treat it with that same value. No amount of outside tax dollars coming into the system is going to fix the performance issues if the students and parents are ok with the status quo. I believe that every child deserves and education, but it feels like a large percentage of JPS parents just want a free daycare with good A/C and free food. You're not going to fix this system by throwing money at it.

Anonymous said...

I agree 8:45, money is not the problem. Incompetence is. The state of the education system in Jackson is worthy of a protest. They need to clean house from the top down and start all over. Those kids deserve a chance! JPS will spend every penny that you give them & the state of the education system will still not improve.

Anonymous said...

Only a simpleton (see above) would offer a simple and very tired explanation for a complex situation. The decline of the JPS began in the 1970s with white flight from the integrated public schools in Jackson. White-owned businesses followed, gutting the tax base. The pattern continues to this day. I agree the problem has been compounded by poor management at the administrative level, but my experience has been that most teachers and principals care about their kids and try to do a good job with limited resources. And there certainly is no reason to punish the kids who need and are entitled to a good education by refusing to fund necessary improvements. In fact, I believe anyone who would make fixing potholes a priority over a quality education probably did not get one.

Anonymous said...


Only a simpleton would conclude that the flight of the past 10-15 years has been "white flight".

Anonymous said...

With teachers comprising only 38% of the JPS employees, I think you can see the problem, even if you are a simpleton.

The reason maintenance has not been done, is the money is going to a top-heavy, do-little administrative base. Clean house FIRST, then allocate the existing money by priority. There are many long time JPS employees in the administrative offices who do literally nothing or very little..

Antard said...

How does paint and canopies fix failing grades and change the school from F to A?

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If you get tired come relax at the Fox News Tent. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both will entitle you to free drinks.Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required, just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '07 is for EVERYONE!!!

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