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Pell City Schools approves new tax district

Pell City Board of Education 2020-24 teaser

The Pell City Board of Education for 2020-24 was sworn in Tuesday, Nov. 17. The board includes incumbents Joe Sawyer, Cecil Fomby and Laurie Henderson along with newly elected members Greg Crump and Norman Wilder.

The Pell City Board of Education during a called meeting Jan. 6 approved its new tax district.

The district directly coincides with the attendance zone for Pell City Schools and includes both Pell City and Riverside.

The new tax district was made possible by a referendum passed in November that allows residents in St. Clair County school attendance zones to vote on a tax increase to directly benefit the schools within that specific zone.  

The council also voted to potentially amend the separation agreement between St. Clair County Schools and Pell City Schools to help better establish these districts. 

According to Pell City Superintendent Dr. James Martin, the amendment would eliminate the school choice option offered to those living in the Coal City school region north of Pell City. 

Those living in the area currently have the option to attend Pell City Schools or St. Clair County schools in the Odenville area.

If the amendment is also approved by St. Clair County Schools, an official border would then be established within the area to separate attendance zones for Pell City and St. Clair County schools.

The council passed the tax district and potential amendment with a 3-2 vote.

District 4 Councilman Greg Crump and District 5 Councilman Norman Wilder both voted against the option and instead asked for a motion to retable the new tax district and amendment in order to get a better understanding of both.

“I feel like we don’t have enough information on this. That is why I’m against it,” Wilder said, adding he would like to have an input from the city.

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