School board looks at $2 million tax increase | ParkRecord.com

School board looks at $2 million tax increase

Megan Yeiter , The Park Record

Park City School Board members met on May 29 with one main agenda item: The school district’s budget for the 2012-2013 school year. Park City School District Superintendent Ray Timothy made recommendations earlier this month to help the school board shave $4.3 million from the budget. According to PCSD Business Administrator Todd Hauber, a $2 million tax increase would spare the school district from another shortage for up to five years.

During the last board meeting, school board members discussed three scenarios. Scenario 1 showed what the budget would look like without a tax increase, scenario 2 showed the budget with a $1 million tax increase and scenario 3 showed a $2 million tax increase.

"Scenario 3 is taking the $2 million tax increase scenario and mapping this out over time for five years instead of saying let’s look at just next year," he said.

The school district’s revenue comes from local sources, state sources and federal sources, and in scenario 3, it also includes a property tax increase, Hauber explained, adding that combined, these sources equal a little more than $44 million.

The school district’s expenditures equal about $46 million for a base budget, plus base adjustments, which Hauber said depends on what the school district and district employees settle on in negotiations. Hauber did factor in benefit cost increases for district employees which equaled more than $800,000, and gas expenditures that are estimated to reach more than $74,000.

The district will see savings of about $131,000, through the Early Retiree Incentive program, and budget cuts of $4.3 million. Going into next school year, Hauber predicts total expenditures to reach more than $42 million.

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"The monies (with a $2 million property tax increase) are available to get us all the way to year five and we cut it pretty close," he said, adding that by making $4.3 million worth in cuts and raising property taxes by $2 million, the rainy day fund will be $16,000 below what the auditors recommend after five years, which he said is getting pretty close to meeting the school district needs.

According to Hauber, the next step is to finalize negotiations so they can build that expense into the budget. The school board plans to make its final budget proposal by June 19.

"Hopefully they have some direction and know where negotiations are going so we know how to build that into the budget, but there is no guarantee that that will happen and there is no guarantee that that will happen by June 19," he said.

The next school board meeting is scheduled for June 19. For more information regarding the budget, visit http://www.pcschools.us and click the District/Board tab.