Franklin Regionl holds line on taxes
Homeowners in the Franklin Regional School District won't see an increase in their tax bills this summer.
The board approved a $49.3 million budget with no tax-rate increase last week, the first budget without a tax hike in 10 years.
The budget was approved by a 8-1 vote, with board member Dennis Pavlik dissenting. He said he was confused by his fellow board members' change of heart to not squirrel away money for future retirement costs, as had been the practice in the past.
“I was confused by this budget because normally, we put money into that fund instead of withdrawing it,” Pavlik said. “We're kicking the can down the road. I could not bring myself to vote for that.”
Rather than increasing the tax rate, the board opted to use $420,873 from its uncommitted fund balance. Finance director Jon Perry previously had recommended using $270,000 from its fund balance assigned to help smooth retirement-contribution increases. In 2013-14, the district expects to contribute about $4.1 million to the state retirement fund, more than $1 million more than in 2012-13.
State regulations require each district to contribute 16.9 percent of employee salaries to the state retirement fund. During the past several years, Franklin Regional officials have set aside about $3.8 million to help manage the anticipated pension contribution spikes, Perry said. In April, the district added $1.25 million to that fund balance.
School property tax bills won't increase this year. The owner of a home assessed at $35,000 – the average property assessment in the district – will continue to pay about $307 in property taxes.
However, residents who applied for the homestead or farmstead exclusion will receive a $118 reduction in their tax bill. Perry said 7,044 homeowners will receive the exclusion, while 18 farm owners will receive the exclusion.
Daveen Rae Kurutz is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 8627, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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.