DELANO, MN The Delano Public Schools levy could increase as much as 16.36 percent, as the school board approved the maximum tax levy for 2016.
About $760,000 of the $812,000 increase is tied to the previously approved operating levy that will be activated if voters approve Question 1 of the Nov. 3 bond referendum, with the remainder of the increase tied to the growing resident student population.
“In the past, we underlevied the 2007 operating referendum that had been passed,” Business Manager Mary Reeder said. “It would be enacted with this proposed certification in December, depending on the outcome of the bond referendum.”
While Reeder does not know how much the tax rate would increase, homeowners can calculate how much the operating levy will cost them using the tax calculator in the “Referendum 2015” section of the district website.
The general fund and community services portion of the budget account for more than $1.19 million in increases, but debt service is decreasing by nearly $381,000.
“Under the debt service portion, you see a decrease of 16 percent, or $381,000,” Reeder said. “The biggest reason that went down is you refinanced the Tiger Activity Center building referendum that had been passed in 2000.”
The levy will be finalized and certified during the Truth in Taxation meeting at 7 p.m. Monday, Dec. 14 in the high school media center.
Odds and ends
In other business, the board:
• approved election judges and an absentee ballot board for the Nov. 3 election and noted more election judges are needed.
• approved several personnel matters, including the resignations of elementary school teacher Megan St. Amand and sixth-grade teacher Nora Suttner; the hiring of Mary Knight as an elementary teacher and John Guidry as a high school choral teacher; and contract changes for fourth grade teacher Jim Hall, middle school special education teacher Jessica Motzko, elementary school music teacher Rebecca Sanderson, and high school special education teacher Amy Crusoe, who all recently received master’s degrees.
• approved receiving the following gifts: $5,000 from the Knights of Columbus for hearing equipment, $3,052 from the Delano Lions Club for hearing equipment, $2,500 from the Loretto Lions Club for hearing equipment, $775.74 from Coborn’s Labels for Learning for Delano Elementary School, $757 from Wells Fargo Community Support with no conditions, $500 from the Minnesota Community Foundation for the Athletic’s Dorn Scholarship, nearly $385 from General Mills Your Cause for Delano Elementary School, and $375 from Target Thanks a Billion for Delano Elementary School.
• approved an extended field trip to Costa Rica over spring break in 2016.