School Board Regular Meeting
Unofficial Clerk's Summary
06 December 2012
Pursuant to due call and notice thereof, a regular meeting of the School Board of Independent School District 833, South Washington County, was held on Thursday, December 6, 2012. The meeting was called to order by Chairman Leslee Boyd at 6:08 p.m. at the District Service Center, located at 7362 East Point Douglas Road South, Cottage Grove, MN. School Board members present were Marsha Adou, Leslee Boyd, Tracy Brunnette, Jim Gelbmann, Laurie Johnson, Ron Kath and David Kemper. Superintendent Keith Jacobus was present.
Aaron Bushberger, Director of Finance, presented information on the tax levy for taxes payable in 2013. According to Minnesota statutes, school districts must hold a public hearing (previously known as 'Truth in Taxation') to present information related to the taxes payable in 2013 and allow for public input at the hearing. School funding is highly regulated by the state. The state sets formulas which determine revenue and most of that revenue is based on specified amounts per pupil. The state sets tax policy for local schools as well. In addition, the state sets maximum authorized property tax levy totals. State funding for schools has not kept pace with inflation. Per pupil revenue for fiscal year 2013-14 without increase is $401 below the 2004-05 inflation adjusted amount. Basic per pupil funding for 2014 and 2015 will be set by the 2013 Legislature. With state funding continuing to lag behind inflation, many districts have been facing and will face budget shortfalls for FY 2014 and FY 2015 and anticipate the need for budget cuts. To meet local school budget shortfalls, voters in 297 Minnesota school districts (which is 88% of all Minnesota districts) have approved an operating referendum levy. The state average amount is $899 per pupil. The tax levy is based on many state-determined formulas. Some increases in tax levies are revenue neutral, offset by reductions in state aid. The expenditure budget is limited by state-set revenue formulas, voter-approved levies, and fund balance, not just by tax levies. The School Board certified the proposed levy for taxes payable in 2013 at the September 27, 2012 School Board meeting. The School Board certified the proposed levy at $54,060,360. The recommended final levy is the same amount. The total 2013 proposed property tax levy will increase from 2012 by 1.2%, or $634,775. Reasons for this increase include adjustments for prior years and payments on alternative facilities bonds have increased. Final levy certification for property taxes payable in 2013 is scheduled for the December 20, 2012 School Board meeting.
Motions were made and seconded to approve the consent and main agenda items. Consent agenda items included resignations and terminations, leaves of absence, and new employees/change of status.
Board Chair Leslee Boyd has announced her resignation effective at the end of the calendar year. According to Board policy and Minn. Stat. §123B.09, the vacant School Board position is to be filled by appointment. Letters of Intent for this vacancy were accepted until November 26, 2012. Fourteen individuals submitted their letter of intent. Board members discussed how they wanted to move forward with selecting a replacement for Leslee. The next steps will be handled through the Board's Personnel Committee consisting of Marsha Adou, Tracy Brunnette and Laurie Johnson. The committee will determine which candidates will be interviewed, as well as the questions to be asked. The dates of the interviews, when known, will be shared with the selected candidates and the public. The appointed person will serve for a term that will expire at the end of the day on November 5, 2013 (Election Day).
The workshop adjourned at 7:27pm.
This information is only a summary. The full text is available for public inspection at the administrative offices of the school district or at www.sowashco.k12.mn.us .