In addition to setting aside lottery proceeds for debt service, the Board of County Commissioners developed the Education Debt Leveling Plan (EDLP) to help pay for the debt service that the lottery proceeds does not cover. An EDLP designates a certain portion of property tax revenue each year to pay for debt service from major capital projects related to education. These funds are allowed to accrue and then be invested as needed. There are currently two approved EDLP’s. The first is equal to 3.0 cents of the property tax rate and is designated to offset the costs of debt service that lottery proceeds will not cover from the 2006 Education Bond Referendum for WSFCS and Forsyth Technical Community College (FTCC) construction projects. The second EDLP is equal to 1.1 cents of the property tax rate and is designated to offset the costs of debt service from the 2008 Education Bond Referendum, again for WSFCS and FTCC.
Currently, the combined balance of both EDLP’s at the end of the last full fiscal year (2009) is $17.8 million. Almost $1.1 million has been used to pay debt service on bonds used to finance FTCC construction projects. The projected balance of both plans at the end of fiscal year 2014 is $20.7 million. At that time, $67.9 million will have been used to pay debt service on bonds for both FTCC and WSFCS.
The chart below shows us what the Forsyth County property tax rate could look like by fiscal year 2014 if the Board of County Commissioners had not created the EDLP program.