Acting as expected, the St. Clair R-XIII School District Board of Education Thursday night unanimously voted to keep its 2012-2013 tax levy rate the same.
During a public hearing prior to the regular August meeting, board members supported an overall tax levy of $3.37 for every $100 of assessed valuation.
The $3.37 is split into $2.05 in the incidental (operations) fund, 70 cents in the teachers fund and 62 cents in the debt service fund.
“I feel pretty comfortable right now with where we are,” Superintendent Mike Murphy told board members during the public hearing.
The only levy the board could tinker with is debt service, which has remained at 62 cents since 2001-2002 when it was increased from 55 cents.
Last year at this time, board members discussed raising that debt service tax rate, but opted to leave it alone.
To help offset a reduction in funding into the district and to help balance the books, the board in January refunded its general obligation Series 2007 and 2009 bonds.
“We went through that in-depth analysis and refinanced our bonds to sustain an adequate balance to pay our debt for the upcoming year,” Murphy said, adding that if a slight increase in assessed valuation occurs in future years, the 62-cent levy should remain adequate.
“The 62 cents is my recommendation for the tax rate for the current academic year.”
According to updated information provided by the R-XIII school district, estimated real estate figures for the current year show $93,843,753 for residential, $24,208,193 for commercial and $3,788,450 for agriculture for a district subtotal of $121,840,396. That subtotal is about $1.44 million higher than last year.
Personal property assessment is estimated at $25,082,765, or slightly less compared to last year, for a grand total of $146,923,161.
The $3.37 overall tax levy is expected to bring about $4,644,329.28 into district coffers during the fiscal year that started July 1. That amount is broken into $2,825,185.46 in the incidental fund, $964,697.48 in the teachers fund and $854,446.34 in the debt service fund.
With the updated August assessment figures, the overall projected revenue from the approved tax levy is about $12,659 less than preliminary estimates from May.
Revenue is determined by dividing the assessed valuation by 100, multiplying by the proposed rate and then multiplying by the anticipated collection rate of .9380, the district stated.
In June, school board members approved a 2012-2013 budget totaling $22.54 million, or about 1.3 percent less than the year before.