Parkland Looks At Possible Tax Hike for 2012-13
A preliminary budget with a proposed 4.95 percent tax increase will be introduced later this month, though Parkland School District officials expect that number to come down.
So, at Monday morning's district Personnel and Finance Committee meeting, Director of Business Administration John Vignone painted a picture of austerity as the process begins.
A preliminary budget with a 4.95 percent tax increase will be proposed, according to Superintendent Richard Sniscak. "However, that will have to come down by June, and it will.
By state mandate, the school district can raise taxes by 1.7 percent and go up to 3.83 percent with exceptions granted by the state.
"Everything in our control is being looked at," Vignone said. However, without Gov. Tom Corbett's state budget in place, Parkland's final 2012-13 will likely remain fluid until June.
More will be known about the budget as the school year wears on as the board gets information on monies garnered by bond refinancings, teacher retirements and other options of savings, Vignone said.
The district raised taxes 3.8 percent for the 2011-2012 school year, eliminated 60 positions, about half through attrition, and cut its behind-the-wheel driver education program to balance the budget. Parkland administrators also took a pay freeze.
Also, teachers are in the last year of a five-year contract. Early bird contract negotiations are under way. With the contract nearing its end, officials expect several teachers to retire by the end of the school year.
Parkland's Budget Schedule:
* Jan. 24, adoption of preliminary budget
* Jan. 30, deadline to submit any proposed tax increase to the state Department of Education.
* May 15, adoption of proposed final budget for 2012-2013;
* June 19, adoption of final budget for 2012-2013.