Tax Information

2023 Tax Levy

The tax extension last year was $12,003,497 and we are asking for a 5.95% increase for next year on the levy. 

The tax rate last year was $4.95 in 2022 and we are asking for $4.70 in the levy due to new construction and increased assessments. 

The district is not choosing to balloon the levy; 5.95% is expected based on the PTELL formula of CPI (6.5%) or 5% (whichever is lower) plus new construction/new property. 

The change from $4.95 to $4.70 per $100 of equalized assessed value would equate to a property tax decrease of $83.33 per $100,000 value home without exemptions. 

More information is in the presentation below.

2023 Tax Levy Presentation

Understanding your tax bill

District 120 operates under the Property Tax Extension Limitation Law, or the Tax Cap. This law slows the rate at which taxes rise by establishing a limit on the increase the district can receive from the previous year. This limit is 5% or the Consumer Price Index (CPI), whichever is lower.

How Taxes Are Calculated

Tax Bill

In May of each year, residents receive their tax bills (payable in two installments: June and September). Information about tax bills for any property in the county is available at the Jo Daviess County Assessment Office website.

Tax Cap (PTELL)

The 1991 Property Tax Limitation Act limits any increase in property tax dollars to 5% or the CPI (Consumer Price Index), whichever is less. The overall impact of the tax cap has been to slow the rate at which taxes rise. New construction contributes additional dollars. Note that the cap limits the actual dollars received, not a percentage. The tax cap applies to the total dollars received by the district; taxes on individual properties may change by various percentages, depending on the value of their property.

Effect of Assessments

The tax rate for each taxing body is affected by the total value of all property in the district boundaries (tax base). The greater the tax base, the lower the rate needed to raise a given levy. An increased base, which may be due to new property, removal of exemptions, or tax incentive programs that have expired, could result in a lower tax rate. A decreased base, which may be due to property demolition, decreasing property values, or the addition of exemptions or tax incentive programs, could result in an increased tax rate.

Tax Rate

The county clerk calculates taxes by applying a rate to each property value; the owner of a million dollar home pays the same rate as the owner of a $150,000 condominium, but the total dollars are more for the higher-value property.

New construction

After the county clerk calculates the capped amount of tax dollars the district may receive, new construction is factored in; the total amount becomes the base for the calculation the following year.


School districts must ask voters for permission before they can levy (request tax revenues) funds beyond what the tax cap allows; this is done by referendum.

Equalized Assessed Valuation (EAV)

Your taxes are based on the EAV of your home (one-third fair market value). Increased EAV does not increase the dollars the Galena School District receives beyond what the cap allows, but it does affect how much each property owner pays.


Appreciation does not increase the tax dollars coming to the district beyond what the tax cap allows.

How much does the Galena School District receive in property taxes?

The tax extension accounts for 81.2% of the revenue that is received the district, and State and Federal resources make up the majority of the rest. The annual extension is responsible for annual district operations broken down in the chart below. The total dollars expected to receive from all revenue sources for the 23-24 school year is $14,936,603.

How does the Galena School District spend property taxes?

The chart below depicts a breakdown of all expenses to educate the students of our district. The major items include salaries, employee insurance, daily bus transportation, IMRF/Social Security, liability & vehicle insurance, building & property maintenance, and utility bills.

The 23-24 budget (both revenues and expenditures) may be viewed in detail here. If you have any questions, please contact Tim Vincent directly at or call directly at (815) 777-6681.