School District Income Taxes: New Revenue or a Property Tax Substitute?
Using a panel of 609 Ohio school districts from 1990 to 2008, this paper investigates the effects of school district income tax on operating property tax revenue. After correcting for endogeneity, the results do indicate a substitution effect that lowers the property tax levy. Despite reduced property taxes, greater income taxation is mostly to increase total revenues. By how much total revenues increase varies widely depending on the relative and absolute sizes of property and income taxes. We also find that school districts were able to increase the amount of the property tax by a greater amount than nonadopting districts in the years following the adoption of income taxes.