2012-06-28 / Front Page

.6412 Mill Tax Increase For Central Fulton

By Chanin Rotz-Mountz

The head of the Central Fulton School Board’s Budget and Finance Committee read aloud a prepared statement last Tuesday evening as part of the board’s decision to adopt the district’s budget and raise real estate taxes.

In making the motion to adopt the $13,113,456 budget for the 2012-13 school year, board member Gary Shives announced, “Due to Gov. Tom Corbett’s continued attitude towards subsidizing public education, it is necessary to rely more and more on local resources raised by increasing real estate millage rates.”

“Although many of the costcutting measures implemented last year continue to offset the normal increase in expenses, it is necessary to increase our millage by .6412 mills, a 2.3 percent increase. These increases are primarily necessary to fund charter school tuition costs and required retirement contributions,” Shives concluded.

The approved increase will therefore bring the real estate millage rate to its new level of 28.5220 mills. While the millage rate increased, other annual taxes remained at their current level such as the $5 Act 511 and Act 679 per-capita taxes. Real estate transfer taxes and wage taxes will stay at 1 percent, and the Act 511 occupation tax will be $10.

In following the recommendation of the Budget and Finance Committee, the board agreed to approve the 2012 Homestead / Farmstead Exclusion Resolution as presented. As part of the state’s Act 1 dealing with gaming revenues, the average household in the district participating in Homestead/Farm-stead will receive a tax reduction of $226.98.

The board also agreed to a 1.29 percent salary increase for numerous individuals, including administration, middle management and the district’s athletic trainer. An actual dollar figure equating to the 1.29 percent increase was made available to the “News” by Business Manager Jolinda Wilson.

According to Wilson, the middle/ high school principal will receive a raise of $1,097; elementary principal, $1,014; assistant elementary principal and director of special education, $903; director of building and grounds, $533; transportation coordinator, $491; and business manager, $1,026.

As a follow-up to last month’s approval of coaches and salaries, the board readdressed the matter on June 19 and corrected several salaries. Junior varsity boys soccer coach Cory Houck is now slated to receive a salary of $1,895, while Cherina Cutchall, junior high volleyball coach, will get $1,845.

An additional motion made last Tuesday resulted in a total of 13 individuals being placed on the extracurricular salary scale for 2012-13. Those receiving approval were elementary intramural director Brent Seville, $906; elementary intramural director Kim Richards, $648.33; elementary intramural volunteer assistants Murray Romig and Ryan Richards; girls track first assistant coach Jessica Curfman, $2,045; softball head coach John Heuston, $3,145; softball junior varsity coach Candace Bard, $2,295; volleyball junior high assistant coach Pamela Cutshaw, $1,695; junior high track coach Tracy Kendall, $1,800; elementary band/chorus director Cathy Richards, $2,445; girls track head coach Joni Dunkle, $3,470; junior high boys assistant coach Dane Pollock, $1,945; and volleyball volunteer assistant coach Dorothy Doyle. Board member Ryan Richards abstained during the roll-call vote.

Kristi Bagley, of Lebanon, was hired as the district’s new school psychologist to be shared on a 50-50 basis with neighboring Southern Fulton School District. Bagley’s salary was set at $50,000.

The personnel committee was granted the authority to hire individuals for positions that may become vacant prior to the board’s next scheduled meeting in August.

Tenure was granted to school nurse Amy Elvey and special education teachers Heather D. Walker Strait and Candace M. Bard.

The board revisited a job description for new hire, technology coordinator Jason Carbaugh. The description was revised to say the coordinator will be supervised by the superintendent and not the business manager as previously stated.

Unpaid leave days were granted for 10 employees during the 2011-12 school year. In addition, a request for worker’s compensation leave submitted by Pam Ott was approved retroactive to September 26, 2011, through January 2, 2012.

Several resignations were approved by the board, including those of middle school teacher Nicole Mendenhall and family and consumer science teacher Sara Duncan. Both resignations are effective at the close of the 2011-12 contract year.

The board hired Needmore resident Michael Shaw as a maintenance employee at a starting salary of $13 per hour. Shaw, who submitted his letter of resignation the same night as Southern Fulton’s building and grounds supervisor, will begin at Central Fulton on July 1.

Members of the administration are slated to attend the administrative retreat hosted by Tuscarora Intermediate Unit #11 at Felicita Mountain Resort located near Harrisburg. The retreat is scheduled for July 23-24 and will be attended at no cost to the district.

A resolution presented to the board was accepted to release the Central Fulton School District as an “authorizer” of the New Day Charter School effective June 30, 2013. Other districts requesting the same release to relieve them of costs associated with transporting students to the Huntingdon based school are Forbes Road, Southern Huntingdon and Southern Fulton school districts.

Teacher Kate Carbaugh was given permission to take approximately 42 students to Washington, D.C., in either June or July. The trip will be at no cost to the district.

An agreement with Manito of Chambersburg was approved for the organization to provide “alternative educational services for disruptive youth.” The annual student seat or slot rate for alternative education placement is $15,000 per slot, while the perdiem rate for alternative education placement is $115. The agreement notes the annual cost of pre-purchased slots must be paid in two equal payments in September 2012 and January 2013. For additional slots and transportation, the district will be invoiced on a monthly basis.

A contract was again approved to continue the Behind The Wheel driver’s education instruction with Gregory Hays, who will also be required to complete necessary student paperwork. There will not be an increased cost for either the student driving or paperwork aspect of the service.

A letter from the state Department of Education outlining the audit of school operations for the fiscal years ending June 30, 2007 and 2008, were approved publicly and made a matter of school record.

Policy 815 outlining acceptable uses of electronic communication systems, devices, networks and the Internet was adopted as presented, as was the middle/high school handbook.

Under the category of transportation, the board entered into extracurricular contracts with three separate providers. Sandy Deck Transportation will oversee all activity runs as well as the transportation of basketball teams, while Lynda S. Strait will handle baseball, softball and soccer trips. Junior Swope was selected to handle track and field as well as volleyball.

The per-mile rate for the buses will be $2.14, which was derived using last year’s permile rate and a cost-index increase. Meanwhile, the rate for vans for the extracurricular routes is $1.61.

The daily rate for van Route #017 belonging to Sandy Deck Transportation was decreased to $156.60 retroactive to May 17. The rate drop has been attributed to a student no longer needing transportation to Nulton, thereby decreasing the overall mileage.

Van Route #033 contracted to Lynn Reeder saw a very slight increase in the daily rate to $200.50 retroactive to May 14.

A contract was penned with Sandy Deck Transportation that will provide extended school year transportation between June 19 and July 26. Sandy Deck will receive a daily rate of $383.43 for its route totaling 142.2 miles. The route will be operated on Tuesdays and Wednesdays during that time frame.

The board held two executive sessions lasting 25 minutes and 90 minutes during the course of last Tuesday’s meeting. The topic of personnel was discussed at that time.

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