This site provides information for taxpayers of Independent School District 278 – Orono, regarding how the district’s proposed referendum may affect property taxes. The site was prepared in cooperation with Ehlers,  the district’s independent municipal advisor. If you have questions about the information on this site, please contact Ehlers using the information provided below.

About the Referendum

The district will hold a special election for a capital project levy on Tuesday, November 3, 2020 seeking voter approval of one ballot question.

QUESTION 1 would authorize the district to revoke its existing capital project levy authorization and replace that authorization with a new authorization.  The proposed authorization will raise approximately $1,988,720 for taxes payable in 2021, the first year it is to be levied, and would be authorized for ten (10) years. The money raised by the capital project levy authorization will provide funds for the replacement and maintenance of core technology infrastructure to improve teaching and learning.

For more information on how these funds would be used, return to the District’s Levy website.

Impact on Property Taxes

Approval of the ballot question would result in a property tax increase beginning with taxes payable in 2021, and the debt service tax levies would remain in place for 10 years. To determine the estimated impact of the proposed ballot question on your 2021 taxes, follow the instructions below or view sample property types and values here.


Your 2021 taxes will be based on the 2020 Estimated Market Value (EMV), which was provided on the “Notice of Valuation and Classification” mailed by your county in March 2020 (see example). If you don’t have that document available, please contact your county and ask for the 2020 EMV for taxes payable in 2021, or follow the instructions below to look up your 2020 EMV on your county’s website.

Hennepin County
Assessor - (612) 348-3011

Click on the link below and choose your preferred search method on the left hand side of the screen.  Enter your search criteria and click on the correct parcel from the list of results.  Click on the “Current year values” link and then find the “Values Estimated” section in gray.  Enter the value from the “Totals:” row in the tax calculator below (do not use the value amount labeled “Total Taxable Market Value:”).

Hennepin County Property Search


Residential Homestead Property
If you own a RESIDENTIAL HOMESTEAD property, enter the Estimated Market Value below to see the estimated tax impact
Enter only whole numbers to the nearest dollar
(no dollar signs, commas, or decimals).
Commercial / Industrial Property
If you own COMMERCIAL/INDUSTRIAL property, enter the Estimated Market Value below to see the estimated tax impact.
Enter only whole numbers to the nearest dollar
(no dollar signs, commas, or decimals).

Only bond payments qualify for the agricultural tax credit, therefore there is no credit related to the capital project levy.

There are certain Minnesota Tax Credits and Deferrals that may affect certain property owners’ situations. They include:

Minnesota Homestead Credit Refund

If your adjusted gross income is less than approximately $115,020, you may qualify for the Homestead Credit Refund (also known as the “Circuit Breaker” refund). This program, which has existed since the 1970s, is intended to reduce tax burdens for homeowners with relatively low incomes and relatively high property tax burdens. Some important facts about this program are summarized below.

  • Available each year to owners of homestead property
  • Applies only to the taxes attributable to the house, garage, and one acre on agricultural homestead property
  • Available to all owners of residential homestead and agricultural homestead property with household incomes of less than $115,020
  • Refund is on a sliding scale, based on your income and your total property tax burden
  • The maximum refund is $2,820
  • Also available to renters
  • To determine eligibility and refund amounts, complete Minnesota tax form M1PR
Special Property Tax Refund

If your total property taxes increase by more than 12 percent and more than $100 from one year to the next, you may qualify for a state refund equal to a portion of the increase. There is no income limit for this refund.

To determine eligibility and refund amounts, complete Minnesota tax form M1PR.

Senior Citizen Property Tax Deferral

If you are 65 years or older and have a household income of $60,000 or less, you may be eligible to defer a portion of the property taxes on your home, through the Senior Citizen Property Tax Deferral Program. The program:

  • Limits the maximum amount of property tax you pay to 3 percent of your total household income
  • Provides predictability; the amount of tax you pay will not change for as long as you participate in this program