School Board Approves Budget, Lower Tax Rate
State and federal funding also decrease for 2011 for Waukesha schools.
Taxes for residents in the Waukesha School District will decrease, according to the final budget adopted by the school board Tuesday night.
In a short meeting that was all business, the Waukesha School Board unanimously approved a final budget and tax levies for 2011-12.
The final approved budget includes $170,812,573 in revenues and $171,987,180 in expenditures and results in a total tax levy of $83.9 million, a $2.3 million decrease in tax levy from last year.
The 2011 tax rate will be $9.24 per $1000 of equalized assessed property value. For a house assessed at $200,000, the school district portion of the tax bill would be $1,848.
The final budget includes state aid other state sources of revenue in the amount of $54,179,247, about $5 million less than last year. Federal sources of funding also decreased, by $594,631 to $9,674,236 for 2011.
The decreases in funding were partially offset by a $10.4 million a settlement the school district will receive from RBC Capital Markets.
The district, along with other area districts, was in litigation with the company and in August, the SEC charged the company with misconduct and failing to adequately disclose risks associated with the investments.
In expenditures, the district will spend less money on teachers’ salaries and benefits in 2011-2012. For salaries, the district expects to spend $59,172,368 in 2011 compared to $62,909,663 in 2010, a decrease of nearly 6 percent. For benefits, the district expects to save nearly 13 percent in retirement costs, spending $10,654,864 for 2011 compared to $12,241,488 for 2010. Other savings are expected in insurance.
There was little discussion at last night’s meeting but at a previous meeting, Superintendent Todd Gray said that this budget promotes student achievement without reducing programs.
He also thanked others throughout the district for their sacrifices regarding changes in their benefits that resulted in savings for the district.
“Nearly everyone in the district is now realizing the reductions in health insurance and WRS (Wisconsin Retirement System) and I’m not taking that for granted,” Gray said. “It’s something that everyone is participating in as part of the budget balancing.”