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Harrisville Central School Holding Budget Hearing May 13 on District’s $11.7M Spending Plan with 4 Percent Tax Levy Increase  

 

Published: May 13, 2024 at 12:30 p.m.

By: Announcement from Harrisville Central School

 

 

On Tuesday, May 21, Harrisville Central School District residents will vote on a proposed spending plan for the 2024-25 school year, which stays within the state-mandated tax levy limit, or “cap.” Budget approval requires a simple majority of votes (50% plus one).

 

Polls will be open from 1 to 8 p.m. in the Harrisville Central School Library, 14371 Pirate Lane, Harrisville.

 

In addition to voting on the $11,774,879 budget proposal, residents will elect two members to the board of education and vote on a $315,990 proposition to purchase one 70-passenger school bus and one 66-passenger school bus.

 

The proposed budget calls for a spending increase of $210,228 or 1.82 percent, over the current year’s budget. Much of the increase can be attributed to employee salary, health insurance and retirement benefit cost increases.

 

Part of the proposed spending plan also involves a $100,000 capital outlay project to make improvements in the cafeteria and continue installing energy-efficient LED lighting in additional classrooms. Approximately 82 percent, or $82,000, of the money will be returned to the district in the form of future state aid, reducing the cost to taxpayers to $18,000.

 

District leaders are proposing a tax levy increase of $170,191, or 3.99 percent, which is below the district’s calculated tax levy limit, or “cap,” required by the state. While final assessment figures are not available until August, it is projected that homeowners with an assessment of $100,000 will see their annual taxes decrease by approximately $254, without the STAR exemption.

 

“We believe this proposed spending plan best balances the needs of our students while remaining sensitive to our taxpayers,” said Superintendent Rob Finster.

 

During the budget development process, it became clear the district would have to proactively reduce its labor costs to ensure its financial stability. As a result of lower state aid projections and continued declines in student enrollment, the budget proposal includes the reduction of at least four full-time equivalent (FTE) positions through staff retirements and resignations. The reductions include one teacher position, two teaching assistant positions and a cleaner position.

 

“These decisions were not at all easy to make,” said Finster. “However, we believe this plan will allow us to maintain a financially secure path forward for the district while still offering the same rigorous academic programs that our families and community have come to expect from us.”

 

Harrisville residents are encouraged to attend the district’s Annual Public Hearing on Monday, May 13, at 5:30 p.m. in the Harrisville Central School Library.

 

More information about the 2024-25 proposed budget is also available by calling the District Office at 315-543-2707.

 

BOARD OF EDUCATION ELECTION:

 

Two incumbent candidates, Kathy Felio and Tennille Schmitt are running unopposed for re-election to their seats on the board.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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