Archive for Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Tonganoxie USD 464 to have slight mill levy increase

August 3, 2010

The Tonganoxie School District’s 2010-11 $20.2 million budget will require a mill levy increase — but it’s a minimal jump.

The school board, at Monday’s special meeting, approved publishing the budget at 54.808 mills, which basically is in line with the 2009-10 actual budget of 54.754.

Superintendent Kyle Hayden noted the recommended budget is not official until it goes through two audits and eventually the actual budget is determined next May. He also said the mill levy would increase if assessed valuation dropped.

Hayden’s budget is based on assessed valuation of $90,918,407. That’s up from the actual valuation of $90,032,018 for 2009-10.

A mill is $1 in taxes for every $1,000 in property valuation.

“We keep about $1.2 million in reserve funds… enough to make a full year of principal and interest payments,” Hayden explained.

The budget will be published in today’s and next Wednesday’s editions of The Mirror and there will be a budget hearing at the next regular meeting, which is schedule for 6 p.m. Monday, Aug. 16 in the Tonganoxie High School library on the west campus. The meeting normally is the second Monday of each month, but was moved because of the Leavenworth County Fair, which is next week.

Board approves various hires and resignation

The school board approved the following hires at Monday’s meeting: Ashley Loucks as elementary teacher, Michael Allen for technology support, Sherry Miller as part-time para-professional, Monica Wise as bus route driver, Ed Kesinger as bus para-professional and Stephanie Maurer as elementary school para-professional.

The board also accepted the resignation of Tammy Hilker as TES para-professional.

Kindergarten fees remain same

Kindergarten fees will be $180 per year, which keeps them in line with the previous school year’s rate. That’s a drastic drop from the approved $720 per year rate that the board approved earlier this school year.

Hayden said the decision was made because of positive ending cash balances and it would decrease the financial burden on parents.

The board unanimously approved the late change in enrollment fees.

“I feel bad we did the worst-case scenario,” board member Diane Truesdell said about the higher fees during tough economic times. “But I think this is awesome and welcomed with open arms. I think it’s great.”

Parking lot renovation starts today

The parking lot on the north side of Tonganoxie Middle School is getting a facelift — and it’s supposed to be completed before school is back in session.

The board approved awarding the low bid to Harbour Construction, Kansas City, Kan., for $65,937.

Hayden has discussed concerns about immediate repairs to the parking lot in recent meetings.

Work will start today and is to be finished by Aug. 16. The school year begins Aug. 19. The deadline was included in bid specifications, Hayden said.

Board member Leana Leslie asked whether any penalty provisions were put in place in the event the project wasn’t finished by the deadline day. Hayden said that was discussed when creating bid specifications, but because of the short notice of the project, opted not to add that provision with concern of getting bids. Also bidding were McConnell and Associates ($68,860) and Meadows Construction ($83,175).

Board member Kathy Baragary inquired about a warranty, to which Hayden said such projects normally carry a one-year warranty.

“What if next year it looks bad again? Do these guys seem to stand behind that?” Baragary asked. “We don’t seem to get beyond this asphalt problem in this district.”

The parking lot is just a few years old, as the middle school was built following a 2004 bond issue passage.

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