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Grinnell-Newburg CSD


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Information to PPEL Renewal


From the Desk of Superintendent Steven H. Barber & CFO Lisa Briggs


Renewal - Physical Plant and Equipment Levy Vote - Renewal


The Grinnell-Newburg Board of Education is asking residents of the Grinnell-Newburg school district to consider the renewal of the school district’s voter approved Physical Plant and Equipment Levy (PPEL), the primary source of funds for repair, equipping, and improving your schools. The condition, safety, appearance and equipping of Grinnell-Newburg schools is important, not only to the students, parents and teachers, but also to the community that uses these facilities for non-school programs each year. If the PPEL Levy were to pass, the district would be authorized to continue the levy for 10 years. Voter-approved PPEL provides just over $500,000 annually. This article is not intended to advocate that you vote for or against PPEL, but instead inform you about the facts of the election. 


Voters will consider whether to renew the school district PPEL, along with the school board, election on November 7. This is not a new tax or a tax increase, as Grinnell-Newburg residents have been providing this support to their schools since 1997. Prior to PPEL, this type of support was provided through the Schoolhouse Levy for many years. 


This election requires a 50 percent +1 majority “yes” vote to pass. Residents of the Grinnell-Newburg School District may vote if they are registered and 18 years of age or older on election day. If passed the levy will continue at the same rate it has for many years. 


What is PPEL?

PPEL is a property tax and income surtax specifically designated by the state, which allows communities to approve a levy. Use of PPEL funds are narrowly defined by the state, so funds are used as intended. 

Included in its approved uses are:

  • Repairing, remodeling, improving or expanding school houses or buildings;
  • Purchase, lease or lease-purchase of equipment $500 or more in value;
  • Improvement of grounds, such as grading, landscaping, paving, seeding, lighting, storm drains, fences and other similar expenses;
  • Rental of facilities, purchase or lease-purchase option agreements for buildings;
  • Purchase of equipment for transporting students;
  • Equipment purchases for recreational purposes.


What does this mean to me in terms of my taxes?

  • The school tax rate will not increase if PPEL is renewed; this is only continuing an existing levy. Residents of the Grinnell-Newburg school district have provided this funding first through the “Schoolhouse Levy,” and then  replaced by the current Physical Plant and Equipment Levy (PPEL).
  • PPEL is one of several levies that make up the overall school tax rate.
  • PPEL may represent up to $0.67 of the school tax rate, applied per $1,000 of taxable assessed valuation. The District currently has a 1% income surtax.
  • $3.95 per month is the amount a homeowner of the Grinnell-Newburg school district would pay with a home assessed at $175,000.


Assessed home value



Iowa roll-back rate reduces the taxable value





Assessed value after roll-back



Homestead credit reduces the taxable value





Adjusted taxable value



The rate is applied per $1,000 of value




Thousands of taxable assessed value





Multiply by the PPEL rate (less income surtax)



Total annual PPEL contribution





Divide by 12 to calculate the monthly amount





Monthly PPEL contribution





Ways PPEL has supported the Grinnell-Newburg school district

  • Band Equipment
  • Carpet and Flooring
  • Computer Equipment-staff and student devices
  • Copiers/Printers
  • Desk/Furniture Replacement
  • Fence Repair/Replacement
  • Fiber Optic Upgrades
  • Hot Water Heaters
  • HVAC and Boiler Repairs
  • Lease Agreements
  • Maintenance Vehicles/Tractors/Mowers
  • Painting of Classrooms
  • Parking Lot/Sidewalk Repairs
  • P.E. Exercise Equipment
  • Playground Equipment/Repairs
  • Plumbing Repairs/Replacement
  • Roof Repair/Replacement
  • Security Equipment/Upgrades
  • Sports Fields Improvement
  • Structural Repairs
  • Transportation Vehicles/Buses
  • Tuck Pointing
  • Turf Stadium


The Voter Approved PPEL expires in June 2026. A passing vote needs to occur prior to the 2027 certified budget (March 2026) in order for the levy to continue. In order to call a vote the Board will need to adopt a resolution (prior resolution) to call the election and then file it with the controlling county auditor at least 46 days prior to the election date.





November 7, 2023 – Reg. Election

September 22, 2023

March 5, 2024

January 19, 2024

September 10, 2024

July 26, 2024


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