Columbus City Schools Levy: By the Numbers

Miriam Bowers Abbott Miriam Bowers Abbott Columbus City Schools Levy: By the NumbersPhoto by Walker Evans.
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As the Board of Education begins to move a levy proposal to the ballot in November (varying proposals would support the Facilities Master Plan Update, an Operations levy, or both), the district’s numbers will increasingly become the focus of community interest. The numbers presently in the spotlight range from 17.7 to 22 — that’s the spectrum of potential increases in property tax. The increases would impact those who pay property tax through ownership or rent, while others with 100% tax abatements would be immune from increases.

Typically, tax abatements shift the burden of property tax from business owners to residential owners.

Here are some other numbers within the district:

  • The rank of Columbus, nationally, in terms of highest property tax in major cities: 1
  • The rank of Columbus City, in terms of Franklin County school districts with the most abatements: 1
  • The average amount paid, per parcel, to compensate for abatements: $712
  • Columbus City Consolidated Foregone Tax for the last five years: $72,369,343


  • Number of CCS employees listed in 2013: 7,577
  • Number of CCS jobs threatened in 2013 levy campaign material: innumerable
  • Number of CCS employees listed in the 2016 Board of Education report: 8,777
  • District Treasurer’s Salary in 2015: $151,269
  • District Treasurer’s Salary in 2016: $173,627
  • District Treasurer’s Salary percentage of increase from 2015 to 2016: 15%
  • District Superintendent’s Salary in 2014: $218,095
  • District Superintendent’s Salary in 2016: $255,911
  • District Superintendent’s Salary percentage of increase from 2014 to 2016: 17%
  • Average increase in wages in Columbus: 3.2% (National Average is 3%)
  • CCS expenditures in 2016 district forecast: $799,069,005
  • CCS expenditures in 2017 district forecast: $862,677,265
  • Projected expenditure increase in one year: 8%
  • Length of time tax abatements for businesses can be extended: ad infinitum


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