The Tax on Summer Vacations

We all know that the cost of schooling the children is going up in Raleigh, but we have not learned what that is going to cost us until now. WakePol does a breakdown of the increases in taxes that the different plans would cost us here. His conclusion is that the difference in having yearround schools for all students versus only for a small fraction is 3.9 cents for every $100 of assessed property value:

According to county estimates reported today, keeping most students on traditional calendars is 3.9 cents more expensive than making all elementary and middle schools year-round.

The estimates are the first time that anyone has put an actual dollar figure on the savings from switching to year-rounds.

Under three alternatives for school spending discussed Wednesday, the tax increase associated with a school bond would be 7.2 cents, 9.6 cents or 11.1 cents per $100 of assessed value.

So for a middle-income house in Raleigh ($350,000), the owners will pay almost an additional $137 per year if the schools do not go to yearround schools. A lot of money just to save the summer vacation.



I'm assuming there will be summer vacations and longer spring and fall vacations. Plus, take into account the costs saved on summer babysitters/camps/daycares to keep track of the kids.

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.


There will be other breaks, but they will only last a week or two at a time.

$137 is cheap

The year-round schedule is basically 9 weeks on, 3 weeks off. It can cost parents a lot of time and grief trying to get daycare and the like covered during the 3 week breaks. I think $137 is well worth the cost. Parents who want the year-round schedule can self-select, but let's not require it. (If we really want to save money, let's just close the schools altogether and open up child labor sweatshops!)

(By the way, is 350K really a "middle income" house in Raleigh? It looks like the median in 2005 was only 194K.)


The problems with finding daycare and such will be solved once everyone is on the same schedule. Short camps and other opportunities for children will start once there is a market for it. I think finding something for three weeks will easier than finding something for three months every year.

Self-selecting: The way taxes are setup, everyone pays the same rate. So everyone would be paying for the cost of individual families that want to have a summer break.

Median house: The data you point to is for Raleigh-Cary. I was estimating values for ITB, which is where I have been looking. I guess that since this effects all of Wake County the smaller number should be used.

$137 is cheap: I think it is not too bad after filing my tax return, but I would note that $137 is ten times as much the increase in the gas tax that many are worried about (~$10 per driver).