Perry-Lecompton school board holds line on mill levy increase
by Clarke Davis
The Perry-Lecompton school board will hold its budget hearing at the regular Aug. 8 meeting.
While the past three years have taken their toll on the staff, this year’s budget is fairly stable with only a small fraction of a mill levy increase.
Superintendent Denis Yoder said the budget is calling for a levy increase of less than half of one-tenth of a mill.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if it doesn’t go down when the final figures are in this fall, but we don’t know that now,” he said.
Helping the bottom line is an increase in the district’s assessed valuation. The valuation that supports the general fund is up about 1 percent from $50.6 million to $51.3 million. The valuation that supports all other funds went from $55.4 million to $56.1 million.
The district has decreased its staff by another three teachers for this coming year, making it a total of 10 teaching positions eliminated in three years. Two administrative positions have been cut along with four classified persons.
There used to be four sections of grades kindergarten through fourth grade and now there are three sections in each grade.
Believing the district enrollment might be down by 30 students, Yoder is basing the budget on last year’s enrollment of 934 full-time students. The state allows a district to use the current enrollment, last year’s or a three-year average.
Because more districts have maximized their local option budget—a tax levy set by the local board that cannot exceed 30 percent of the general fund budget—the state has less money to share. Based on their wealth, USD 343 was once a 43 percent district — the rate at which the state helped support the LOB. But now it only provides 82 percent of that original support.
All taxing line items in the budget are 20 set by the state, 22.099 for the LOB, and 8.310 for bond and interest for a total tax levy of 53.409 mills. Last year’s mill levy was 53.368.
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