Greene County schools tax levy to drop slightly

Two years ago the Greene County Schools board of education told taxpayers the school levy rate would decrease this year and they were correct. The proposed certified budget for 2020-21 calls for a total levy rate of $14.66983 (per thousand dollars of taxable valuation), a decrease of 15 cents from the current year.

A 4.84 percent increase in the total taxable valuation of property in the district helped in being able to reduce the levy. Taxpayers whose valuation increased will likely not see their property tax bills decrease.

The levy will raise $8,049,439. State funding is budgeted at $9,157,368. That assumes a 2.3 percent increase in state supplemental aid. Total revenues are budgeted at $21,580,071.

The total expenditure for instruction is pegged at $10,401,121 for 2020-21, an increase of $126,000 over the current school year. Instructional staff support services are estimated at $586,974, with student transportation estimated at $989,407.

Plant operation and maintenance is budgeted at $1,370,603. General administration, school administration, and business & central administration total $1,617,172.

The 2020-21 budget includes $10,549,217 for facilities acquisition and construction to complete the regional career academy, new high school, and repurposing of the current high school. The current year budget has $23,541,100 in that line item.

Total expenditures are $30,332,641.

Lora Appenzeller, senior analytics advisor for Forecast 5, a financial planning consulting firm the district uses, assisted district business manager Brenda Muir and superintendent Tim Christensen in formulating the budget.

Appenzeller presented the proposed budget to the board at a work session preceding the regular meeting Feb. 19. She said the district is “doing very well for a district with declining enrollment” She commended the board for planning years ahead to avoid potential problems.

At the regular meeting the board set a public hearing on the proposed budget for the regular meeting March 11 at 6:30 pm.

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