By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Platteville looks at school budget with 58-cent mil rate increase
Placeholder Image

School District of Platteville property-owners will pay 58 cents per $1,000 assessed valuation more in property taxes if the school district’s budget is enacted in its current state.

The Platteville School Board got an update on the school district’s 2012–13 budget Monday night. The budget and tax levy must be approved by school district voters at the school district’s annual meeting Aug. 27.

The owner of a house in the school district assessed at $125,000 would pay $1,483.75 in school property taxes, up from $1,411.25 last year.

That property tax bill is based on a projected budget of $15,282,583, up 1.16 percent from the school district’s 2011–12 budget, and a property tax levy of $7,406,762, up 6 percent from the 2011 tax levy.

The difference between the budget and the tax levy is the result of projected decreases in state equalization aid and federal education aid.

Art Beaulieu, the school district’s director of business and auxiliary services, said it was an “absolutely horrendous year in trying to develop the budget” due to the difficulty in projecting personnel costs, which are three-fourths of the budget, and the effect of the closing of St. Mary’s School.

About one-fourth of the school district’s staff is retiring this year and, Beaulieu said, “Most of them are at the top of the salary schedule.” Projecting personnel costs was made more difficult because of the later retirement deadline. The school district also will see costs for retirement benefits more than double, to $662,000 in the next budget, he said.

The St. Mary’s closing means the school district will be paying costs for the O.E. Gray building that St. Mary’s had been picking up — about $20,000 in utilities — while not getting rent from St. Mary’s. At the same time, the school district is required by state law to transport parochial students to parochial schools within five miles of school district boundaries. Beaulieu projected that will cost another $18,000 to $20,000.

The school district is adding another section of sixth grade to handle St. Mary’s students.