No tax increase planned in Apollo-Ridge School District
Apollo-Ridge School District’s $25.5 million preliminary budget for next school year does not include an increase in property taxes, despite a 1% increase in proposed spending over this year, officials said.
The preliminary budget unveiled Monday keeps the tax rate at 62.4 mills in the Armstrong County municipalities of Apollo, North Apollo and Kiski Township. The average homeowner in those communities would continue to pay $1,763 in property taxes.
The rate for Young and Blacklick townships in Indiana County would decrease from 14.8 mills to 14.4 mills. But the average homeowner would continue to pay $1,317 because of an equalization process used when a school district crosses county lines and there are different assessment rates.
Property owners in both counties who sign up for the homestead exclusion would see their real estate taxes reduced by $337.
It’s the third consecutive year that real estate taxes have not gone up in the Armstrong County sector of the school district.
“I think that shows another example that we’re controlling what we actually can control,” Superintendent Matthew Curci said. “We want to grow our academic programs, but we want to be good stewards of our tax dollars.”
Most spending is under contractual control, including salaries and retirement fund contributions.
There is a shortfall of about $1.4 million between projected spending and revenues, but officials said they plan to dip into the district’s $9.9 million reserve fund to make up the projected deficit.
School directors are expected to vote on the preliminary budget May 23, and a final vote is scheduled for June 24.
George Guido is a Tribune-Review contributing writer.