Franklin Regional School District finances struggled in 2012
Tough financial times continued this year for Franklin Regional School District.
District officials considered axing the full-day kindergarten program in the face of a nearly $2 million deficit earlier this year.
The district raised the property tax rate for the 10th consecutive year, which made it the only district in Allegheny or Westmoreland County to raise taxes for that many continuous years.
Like others across the state, the district is dealing with a burgeoning mandated pension plan contribution. In the 2012-13 school year, the district is required to pay about $8 million — part of which will be reimbursed by the state — into the plan. That was nearly double the previous year's contribution.
School board members have said that a time will come when officials will have to seriously consider program cuts. Through tax increases, loan restructuring and retirements, district officials are trying to avoid eliminating any programs.
In 2012-13, the district received consent from the state to raise the tax rate by as much as 5.19 mills. Instead, officials increased the rate by 1 mill to 87.68 mills. The increase amounted to a $36 annual increase for the owner of a home with a market value of $150,000, the average in the district. That tax bill will now be $3,094 annually. Ten years ago, that tax bill would have been $2,336.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.