Higher state aid to boost Oak Creek school budget
Increase allows for additional expenses, with levy dip to boot
Oak Creek — Under the Oak Creek-Franklin School District's 2013-14 preliminary budget, teachers will receive a cost-of-living pay raise, work on the stadium and pool will be funded, and a major textbook purchase will be made — all while the tax levy drops.
The reason for what seems like an unlikely balanced-budget scenario is a $2.3 million increase in state aid to the district. In fact, the district will get one of the highest increases in state aid this year.
The amount of money paid by Oak Creek and Franklin residents through property taxes, according to the preliminary numbers, will decrease by $1,007,778, or 3.6 percent. A homeowner of a median-priced house in Oak Creek would pay $8.32 less than last year, or about $1,955.
While that's better than last year, it still doesn't match 2011-12, when the school budget absorbed about $1,826 from owners of an averaged-priced home (using 2013 property values) in the district.
The budget and changes are preliminary and subject to change based on school enrollment, changes in state aid or changes in property value.
"The only thing we know for sure is that this is going to change," said director of business services Cathy Cramer, adding that she was comfortable with the budget assumptions.
The levy will be presented at the annual meeting at 7 p.m. Aug. 26 at East Middle School, 9330 S. Shepard Ave. The budget will then be finalized after the number on state aid is determined Oct. 15. The final vote is tentatively set for Oct. 28.
Among items budgeted this year will be an $80,000 renovation of the pool, which was approved at the meeting, a $321,000 completion of the stadium and a $30,000 purchase of Advanced Placement Spanish textbooks.
Most changes in salary followed the cost of living, with teachers, administrators and support staff receiving 2 percent pay raises. Teacher aides received a 2 percent pay increase as well, but their hours were reduced to 6.75 hours per day.
No programs are budgeted to be cut or added.
WHAT: Electors will vote on the proposed Oak Creek-Franklin Joint School District levy during the annual meeting.
WHEN: 7 p.m. Aug. 26
WHERE: East Middle School, 9330 S. Shepard Ave.
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