Oak Ridge municipal and school officials could resolve a long-running dispute over sales tax revenues and high school debt payments, and they will discuss a proposed resolution during a joint work session Friday.
The non-voting work session will include the Oak Ridge City Council and Board of Education. Also on the agenda is an update on the visitor bleachers at Blankenship Field, which are being demolished. It’s not clear yet how replacement bleachers will be funded.
The meeting starts at noon Friday in the Oak Ridge Municipal Building Training Room.
The sales tax dispute has centered on how to spend new revenues collected in Anderson County, but outside Oak Ridge, under a sales tax increase approved by county voters in a May 2006 referendum. School officials had argued they can keep that money, but municipal officials had said the revenues should be used for debt payments on the $66 million renovation of the Oak Ridge High School.
The amount of those revenues collected and distributed to the Oak Ridge Schools varies each year, but it has previously been estimated at about $250,000. The draft resolution to be discussed Friday says the school board can determine how to spend that money, although certain conditions apply.
Meanwhile, the money collected inside Oak Ridge under the 2006 county referendum will continue to be used for the high school debt repayments. So will the revenues from a half-cent sales tax increase overwhelmingly approved by Oak Ridge voters in an August 2004 referendum.
More information will be added as it becomes available.
See the agenda here.