State aid to district increases

By Michael S. Hoey

Correspondent

The Delavan-Darien School Board approved a tax levy and mill rate Monday that are about eight-tenths of a percent less than last year’s rates.

The district set its tax levy at $16.4 million and mill rate at $9.02 per $1,000 of equalized property value at its annual meeting. Both are .83 less than last year’s numbers.

Business Administrator Carey Bradley said total expenditures in the general fund to cover day-to-day operations of the district are projected to be $26.4 million for the 2012-13 school year, down from $27 million last year. About half of that amount — $13.4 million — will go toward classroom instruction.

Bradley said she projected a decline in state aid but was pleasantly surprised to see an increase – from $10.1 million last year to $10.3 million this year. She said the formula used to determine state aid was good to the district this year. The formula is based on property value per student in the district.

Federal aid, however, will decrease from $1.8 million to about $782,000 because a pep grant the district had received for the past three years has concluded and no federal stimulus money is being given to fund education this year.

Bradley reported debt service costs will decline because the district paid off some referendum-approved debt this year.

District obligations to pay for special education staff will rise from $75,000 last year to $166,500 in 2012-13 as the district absorbs more special education employees that used to be employed by the county. Those costs will be partially offset by the decrease in debt service costs from $1.9 million to $1.4 million.

Bradley said 58 percent of district revenues come from local resources, the majority of which comes from the tax levy. State aid provides 39 percent and federal sources provide about 3 percent.

Salaries account for 45 percent of expenditures, benefits account for 25 percent and services account for 17 percent.

“The majority of our expenses go to salaries, benefits, and services,” Bradley said. “We are in a people business.”

 
 

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