Latest numbers for SCA budget put school in the hole
CATAWISSA RR - The latest numbers for the 2013-14 Southern Columbia Area budget put the district nearly half a million dollars in the hole.
District Board Vice President Charlie Porter informed the board Monday night that the budget projects show a $454,000 deficit for the upcoming school year, but it's down from the initial report of $643,000 from December.
The budget includes an increase in revenue of $375,258, but an increase in expenditures of $829,339, which includes increases in salaries, health costs, retirement contributions, supplies and transportation.
The largest increase is retirement contributions, which is expected to increase $446,556, but this number is also expected to be reimbursed by half from the state, Porter said.
Last month, the board approved the preliminary budget in the amount of $18,465,177.
In order to fill that deficit with tax increases only, Northumberland County property owners would see a raise from 49.95 mills to 57.24 mills while Columbia County property owners would see a raise from 34.20 mills to 38.77 mills.
On a property assessed at $20,000, Columbia County residents would see an average increase of $91 a year while Northumberland County residents would see an average increase of $146 a year.
However, the board previously said, the state would not allow such a high increase, and the business manager would be working to whittle the budget down before final approval.
The board also approved a total increase of $3,104 for three change orders and a total of $54,625 in credits for two change orders in relation to the completed middle and high school renovation and addition project.
Porter also reported that the first contract proposal with American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), the union that represents non-instructional staff such as aides, custodians, bus drivers, secretaries and maintenance and cafeteria workers, was voted down 23-14 by the union.