Madison City Council hears Limestone County Commissioner, Jason Black, on $1.7 million in school taxes and funds

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MADISON, Ala. (WHNT) — A touchy subject came up at Monday night’s Madison City Council meeting--money for schools.

It’s all over $1.7 million that could be going to Madison City Schools, but is rather staying in Limestone County.

For Madison City Schools, it's money that could greatly benefit its students, but Limestone County wants to keep that money in its districts.

Education and taxes are the current issues for Madison City and Huntsville City Schools spilling over into Limestone County.

Limestone County District 3 Commissioner, Jason Black, spoke up at the Madison City Council meeting regarding the property tax.

"The Limestone County Commission is not involved directly in the civil lawsuit between the school systems. This suit is based solely between the Limestone County Board of Education, Madison City Schools, and Athens City Schools," said Black.

Madison City Schools are striving for the 1,800 students living in Limestone County to benefit from their property tax, TVA education funds, and sales taxes.

"We are losing $1.7 million because of that. And we are looking at some very drastic cuts in Madison City Schools," explained Madison City Schools Superintendent, Dee Fowler.

Here’s a breakdown of how the funds are being looked into; the state legislature is looking into TVA funds, the property tax is currently in litigation.

And as for the sales tax, Dee Fowler explains, "We’re asking all of these guys that are on the city council that are county commission, we're just asking to them to help bring the Limestone County and Athens to the table so we can sit down and talk about this. We are hoping that the sales tax comes to a resolution very quickly."

As for Commissioner Black, he’s caught between a school zone and Limestone County.

"I want everyone to know that I will be a cooperative worker with the City of Madison, with Dr. Fowler and anything that needs to be done,” stated Black. “But you must understand that this is not an issue that I can have any control over, any more than y'all can."

Both Commissioner Black and the Madison City Council agreed that this issue should be defined on a state level.

However, earlier this year House Bill 337 would have benefited Madison City Schools. Representative Mike Ball introduced the bill, but it didn't make it through the legislature.