There’s a consensus on the Longview School Board that they got “blindsided” by the Washington Department of Revenue on the St. John Medical Center property tax reassessment. At the same time, they also say that the current financial state of the district requires them to impose the one-year refund levy that allows the district to recoup the money that they had to pay the hospital. Board President Skip Urling says that it’s a very difficult position to be in, but the community seems to understand. The move to refinance bonds that were issued in 2002 is helping to soften the blow to taxpayers. The savings from that refinancing is reducing the contribution from the Debt Service Fund by nearly $139,000. Instead of collecting $557,000 in the refund levy, the district now only needs to recoup a little less than $419,000. That reduces the refund levy rate from around 12 cents per $1,000 to about 9 cents per $1,000 of assessed valuation. The bill for the owner of a $150,000 house in the Longview School District from about $19 to just over $14. It’s emphasized that this is a one-year situation, and this excess levy will expire at the end of 2012.