School bond and tax elections in Iowa
- 1 Laws affecting school finance in Iowa
- 2 Conduct of the bond election, limitations, rules
- 3 Required notice of bond election
- 4 See also
- 5 External links
- 6 References
- When a school district must exceed the limit set on tax levies.
- When a school district must issue new bonding.
Laws affecting school finance in Iowa
Bond issue law
Physical plant levy law
In Iowa, a school district must have a ballot measure in order to exceed a limit set on physical plant levies. Physical plant levies are levies designed for building new facilities and for capital improvements. Iowa voters can approve up to $1.34 per $1,000 of taxable property in extension of a physical plant levy as long the total amount does not exceed $1.67 per $1,000 in taxable property. 
School district growth rate
In Iowa, school districts are held to a growth rate, there is a limit on how much they can increase spending in their budgets every year. Under Iowa Law, the growth rate is set to four percent; however, Iowa is different than other states as the Governor of Iowa and the Iowa General Assembly has the final say on whether the growth rate goes up or down. The growth rate is determined when the Iowa State Budget is deliberated.
The allowable growth for Iowa schools is calculated by multiplying the statewide percent of growth for the budget year by the regular education cost per pupil for the base year; the growth rate must take into account special education support services allowable growth. This separate growth rate is calculated by multiplying the state percent of growth for the budget year by the special education support services state cost per pupil for the base year.. The current growth rate under Iowa Law is four percent
Conduct of the bond election, limitations, rules
Authority that conducts elections
The County Auditor serves as the responsible election authority for school bond elections.
During a odd-numbered year, elections can be held during the first Tuesday in February and April, or schools can hold elections during the last Tuesday in June or the second Tuesday in September. In a even-numbered year, elections can be held during the first Tuesday in February, April, and December. School districts can also hold bond elections during the second Tuesday in September in a even numbered year.
Form of measures
In Iowa, all ballot measures have strict laws on the formatting when placed on the ballot.
Shall the following amendment to the Constitution (or public measure) be adopted?
- Yes ____
- No ____.
The response is marked by a pen using an "X" or if used by an electronic machine a other distinguishing mark like a check mark, etc.
All ballot measures must be on the same ballot with other constitutional officers that on the ballot if possible. If paper ballots are used, school bond measures must be put on a ballot of a different color not to confuse voters.
All wording of ballot questions must be approved by the County Election Commissioner.
In Iowa, only a simple majority (50 percent plus one) is needed to approve a physical plant and equipment levy election. A super-majority vote of 60 percent is needed to approve any bond issue or bond taxes.
Required notice of bond election
Under Iowa law, there is no time period required that must elapse after a school board approves a resolution for a bond referendum till the election occurs. However, Iowa law does mandates a minimum 20 days public notice for an election.
- Voting on school bond and tax measures
- Where to find information about local school bond and tax elections
- School bond election
- Approval rates of local school bond and tax elections
- "Iowa General Assembly" Iowa Bond Issue Law(Iowa Statutes 75.1-Sections 1 and 2)
- "Iowa General Assembly" Iowa Physical Plant Levy Law(Iowa Statutes 298.2, (4)(a))
- "Iowa General Assembly" Iowa Growth Rate Law(Referenced Statute 257.8)
- "Iowa General Assembly" Iowa Election Law(Iowa Statutes 47.2)
- "Iowa General Assembly" Iowa Election Law (Iowa Statutes Section 39.2, Section 4(c))
- "Iowa General Assembly" Iowa Election Law(Iowa Statutes 49.45)
- "Iowa General Assembly" Iowa Election Law(Iowa Statutes 49.46)
- "Iowa General Assembly" Iowa Election Law(Iowa Statutes 49.43)
- "Iowa General Assembly" Iowa Election Law(Iowa Statutes 49.44)
- Iowa Legislature "Code of Iowa"(Referenced Statute 298.18, Paragraph (3))
- "Iowa General Assembly" Iowa Election Law(Iowa Statutes 277.2)
- "Iowa Legislature" Iowa Election Law(Referenced Statute 49.53)