Property Taxes Won't Rise Under Budget Approved by Moon School Board
The $57.1 million preliminary spending plan calls for staffing and service cuts.
The budget includes no property tax increases, but Alan Bennett, director of fiscal and school services, said many services, including a before- and after-school tutoring program, will be eliminated.
"We really had to look at everything," Bennett said of the budget reductions, which include supplies and equipment from nearly all areas of the district. "Everything was on the table."
Bennett also said more staffing cutbacks in the district will need to be made under the proposed budget but declined to discuss the specifics of those staff changes.
"Those [staff changes] have not yet been looked at by the board," he said.
Five teachers in the district were placed on indefinite furloughs after the board's May 10 meeting.
The district will spend $24.6 million on salaries and $10.5 million on benefits this fiscal year, marking a 4.5 percent decrease from the previous year's budget. Employee retirement benefit costs rose by by 53.4 percent this year.
Board President Mark Scappe called the preliminary budget a "moving target" that he said will likely change before the board takes its final vote on it in 30 days.
"I'm sure that this is going to change from now until the final budget depending on how [Gov. Tom Corbett's] budget changes," Scappe said. "Hopefully we can keep all the staff and all of the curriculum in place for the coming year."
The school district is slated for a $1.2 million reduction in state funding under the governor's current budget proposal. The district's real-estate tax rate remains at 21.30 mills.
The preliminary budget will be available for public viewing through the school district for 30 days before the board's final vote next month. Check back with Patch for more coverage.