Preliminary 2014-15 budget at Pine-Richland includes tax hike
By Rachel Farkas
Published: Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2014, 9:00 p.m.
The Pine-Richland School Board adopted a preliminary 2014-15 budget that includes a 4-percent increase in the real-estate tax rate.
The preliminary budget passed with a 7-2 vote at the Feb. 10 meeting. School directors Theresa Dawson and Marc Casciani voted against it.
Pine-Richland's preliminary general-fund budget includes expenditures of approximately $73 million, up nearly $3.5 million from last year's budget, said Dana Siford, director of financial and operational services. To balance the budget, the district would take $502,964 from its reserves.
A chunk of the expenditure increase comes from Public School Employees' Retirement System contributions, which are estimated at $6.2 million in 2014-15, up from $4.8 million in the current budget. There also is an expected 9-percent increase in the cost of health benefits for employees, although, Siford said, officials hope to get that increase down to around 5 or 6 percent.
Another major increase in expenditures is construction services, which increased from $199,000 in 2013-2014 to $970,000 for 2014-2015.
Construction expenditures are expected to remain about $970,000 annually for the next five years as part of the five-year capital funding plan, which includes projects such as paving at the secondary campus, completion of the window-glass-replacement project at Richland Elementary, roof repairs at five school buildings, and various equipment repairs and replacements across the district.
Total revenue in the 2014-2015 preliminary budget is set at approximately $72.5 million, up nearly $3.3 million from the current budget.
The new property-tax rate would be 19.97 mills. A mill is expected to generate about $2.4 million for the 2014-15 school year.
State law requires school boards to approve and submit a preliminary budget to the state in February unless they adopt a resolution stating that they will not raise the tax rate more than the state index.
The preliminary budget is prone to change over the coming months, as it still is early in the budget season, district administrators said. The final budget will be adopted in June.
“Currently, there are many unknown costs and revenue projections for the school district,” Dennis Sundo, board treasurer, said at an earlier board meeting. “The administration will provide updates for both the board of directors and the public as they become available.”
Budget discussions will continue in finance committee meetings throughout the spring. Upcoming finance meetings will be held at 6 p.m. Feb. 24, March 24, April 28 and May 19 in the DeWitt Blank conference room of the district administration office.
Rachel Farkas is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-779-6902 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.
- Absenteeism of North Hills School Board member causes concern
- Annual North Hills Interfaith Gathering to celebrate different traditions
- Hampton, Pine, Richland named Banner Communities
- Pine-Richland officials look to improve curriculum consistency
- All that Jazz Shaler North Hills Library hosting concert
- Hampton considers adding guidance counselor at high school
- Vincentian Academy looks at expansion plans