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Redwood Falls Gazette - Redwood Falls - MN
  • School board approves levy decrease

  • The amount of funds which are going to be collected in 2013 by the Redwood Area School District through its local levy is going to decrease over what it received in 2012.
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  • The amount of funds which are going to be collected in 2013 by the Redwood Area School District through its local levy is going to decrease over what it received in 2012.
    The amount of the levy certified at the Redwood Area Board of Education meeting this past Monday night is $2,415,920, which reflects a 2.85 percent decrease, or $70,977, over the amount levied in 2012.
    According to John Sellevold, school finance director, the reason for the drop in the levy has to do with declining enrollment but also with the amount of money that has to be collected through the school’s debt service. The general fund levy for 2013 actually drops $41,413 over 2012, which reflects a 3.24 percent decrease, while the debt service amount is decreased by $36,073, which reflects a 3.26 percent increase.
    The board did approve a 6.17 percent increase ($6,509) in the community services levy for 2013.
    The board is authorized to levy up to $900 per pupil unit based on a voter approved levy, and the amount levied dropped because there are fewer students.
    Another reduction in the levy, added Sellevold, is in the school’s integration aid.
    One year ago, it was allowed to levy for more than one year’s worth of integration aid, because it did not find out until late in the year it had been approved to take part in that program. The amount levied in 2012 covered funds for more than one school year’s worth of programming. As a result, that number dropped for the 2013 levy. The total amount of the voter approved general fund levy is $858,798, with the community services levy at $112,058.
    The “other” general levy amount, which covers those areas, such as safe schools, health and safety, deferred maintenance and reemployment, is $376,124, with the debt service actually levy certified at $1,068,940.
    Sellevold told school board members during the Truth in Taxation meeting many of the levied amounts approved at the maximum also include state aid, and when the district reduces the local levy a subsequent reduction in aid also occurs.
    The funding collected in 2013 is used for the 2013-14 school year, said Sellevold, because the school financial year is not the same as the calendar year. Its year begins July 1 and ends the following June 30.
    In other action during its meeting Monday night, the school board:
    • Approved a proposed sixth grade field trip to be held in March which is going to include visits to the state capitol, Target Center ands the Minnesota History Center over two days.
    • Approved the implementation of chemistry credits in the ag department to help meet new standards which require all students starting with the Class of 2015 and beyond to have chemistry or physics as one of its science credits before graduating. According to Darcy Josephson, director of teaching and learning for the school district, the ag class would maintain the rigor students would receive if they took the regular chemistry course, adding it looks right now as if that class would focus on food science.
    Page 2 of 2 - • Approved the employment of Becky Corbett as an assistant gymnastics coach at a stipend of $2,619, Julie Rohling as an assistant gymnastics coach at a stipend of $2,619, Aaron Ferrier as head baseball coach at a stipend of $3,583 and Mark Buyck and Todd Steve as co-coaches for the robotics program at a stipend of $1,164 each with funds for that program coming from community education.
    • Approved the employment of Megan Riley, Anna Gransee, Alysa Gewerth, Tamara Frank and TJ Christ-eson as RVHS student help center tutors at $8 per hour, with Christeson receiving an additional $100 stipend as the center manager.
    • Accepted the audit as presented by Uhlenkamp, PLLP.

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