Dallas School Board votes to include 4.05 percent tax hike in proposed 2016-17 budget

By Camille Fioti for Times Leader - ggibbons@timesleader.com | May 9th, 2016 11:53 pm

By Camille Fioti for Times Leader


The Dallas School Board
http://www.mydallaspost.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/web1_Dallas_School_Board.jpgThe Dallas School Board

DALLAS TWP. — The Dallas School Board voted 8-1 Monday to approve a proposed final budget with a 4.05 tax hike for the 2016-2017 school year.

Board member Sherri Newell voted against the $38,302,415 budget.

The proposed millage rate of 13.1381 would equate to an additional $55.64 per year on an average district home valued at $157,000, said business manager Grant Palfey.

With the potential loss of $390,000 in PlanCon money from the state for reimbursement of construction of the new high school, Palfey said the tax increase would be necessary to avoid educational cuts.

“Something has to be done to make up for that shortfall,” he said, adding that he’s been re-examining all of the contracts in the district and that $759,000 in cuts have been made so far.

“You may see Cintas here instead of Dempsey, and Vector instead of ADT,” he said, referring to potential changes in vendors.

“The goal is to not get in the classroom, but to do (the cuts) administratively,” Palfey said. “The grass might get a little bit higher than the past, because we’re not paying Grasshopper anymore.”

In other business, the board recognized the high school’s LifeSmarts team for winning the national championship in Denver last month. Lauren Hudak, Chris Biesecker, Troy Reinert, C.J. Good and Matt Metzloffre recounted their experience of the event, which consisted of a series of individual and team competitions. The Dallas Foundation donated $2,000 to help pay for the team’s trip.

The board also approved a new athletic handbook for the 2016-2017 school year.

Kristen Gattuso and Bonnie Mannello, of the Dallas Foundation, awarded wishes to four teachers totaling $24,137 during the meeting. The foundation awarded 24 laptop computers and a cart to John Fredericks, a high school science teacher; six iPads to Melissa Spaciano, a first grade teacher at Wycallis; and 24 Google Chromebooks each to Wycallis fourth grade teachers Nicole Valkenburg and Kristyn Ecenrode.

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