About the Impact Aid Program
Many local school districts across the United States include within their boundaries parcels of land that the federal government either owns or has removed from the local tax rolls, including tribal treaty, federal trust and Alaska Land Settlement Act lands. These district face special operational funding challenges; They must provide a quality education to the children living on Indian and other federal lands, while sometimes operating with less local revenue than other school districts because the property is exempt from local property taxes.
Since 1950, Congress has provided financial assistance to these school districts through the Impact Aid Program. Impact Aid was designed to assist local school districts that have lost property tax revenue due to the presence of tax exempt lands or have experienced increased expenditures due to the enrollment of federally connected children, including children living on Indian lands. The Impact Aid law provides financial assistance to local school districts with concentrations of children residing on Indian lands, military lands, military bases, low-rent housing property or other federal property. To a lesser extent, the Law also supports school districts with children who have parents in the uniformed services or employed on eligible federal property but who do not live on federal property. Impact Aid is often an extremely important source of revenue for school districts that serve children living on Indian reservations and other Indian lands, because these districts frequently have a very small local property tax base from which to raise revenue for schools. Some Indian lands districts may have as few as 5 property owners!
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