Impact Aid Program helps schools with funding
By Col. Steven Muhs , 460th Mission Support Group commander
/ Published October 05, 2006
BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- Many local school districts across the United States have federally owned land within their servicing boundaries. These schools are forced to operate with less local revenue than other school districts, due mainly to the fact that federal property is exempt from local property taxes.
To offset this loss of revenue, Congress passed into law the Impact Aid Program in 1950. Impact Aid is a federal program that funds portions of educational costs for federally-connected students. It is an in-lieu-of-tax program - in other words, it is the federal government paying its "local property taxes" to school districts as a result of the presence of federally owned land.
Currently Aurora Public Schools are trying to qualify for impact aid this year. Many other public school districts throughout the Denver-Metro area may also qualify for the Impact Aid Program this year. The program offers $250,000 to $1 million to schools that have at least 400 federally-connected students to help purchase textbooks and computers, and to pay utilities and staff salaries. Impact Aid is the only federal education program where the funds are sent directly to the school district.
To be considered federally-connected, students must be children of Armed Forces members, children who reside on Indian lands, children who reside on federal property or in federally-subsidized low-rent housing, or children whose parents work on federal property. The funds provided to the school district average from $450 to $3,300 per student, depending whether or not the child lives on or off a military installation. Please be aware that this program not only applies to children of military personnel and Department of Defense civilians, but also to contractors that work on Buckley, its Annex, or any other federal property in the State of Colorado.
For people's children who attend public schools, it is very important the Impact Aid survey is filled out so schools can receive the funding, which offsets the lack of local property tax collections. If for some reason, the materials are not brought home, please contact the school.