Report: Nebraska Schools Rely Heavily on Property Taxes

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LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - A new report says Nebraska's K-12 public schools rely more heavily on local taxes for funding than any other state in the nation.

The report released Monday by the OpenSky Policy Institute notes that more than 55 percent of school funding came from local sources in the last school year, while nearly 37 percent came from the state. The rest came from federal sources.

Executive director Renee Fry says most local funding comes from property taxes, which has created a divide between rural schools and urban districts with more students. Farmers in rural districts often pay more because they own valuable land, not because of their incomes.

The report does not make specific recommendations, but could factor into debates next year among lawmakers who are looking at the funding formula.