South Fayette School Board approves budget
School directors in South Fayette approved the district’s 2013-14 budget with a millage rate of 24.7126 at a meeting June 25. The vote was 7-1 with Bill Sray voting against the budget. Board member Alexander Czaplicki was absent.
The millage rate includes the two percent index of 0.5019 mills and a 0.3093 exception for PSERS (Public School Employees Retirement System) and includes expenditures of about $41.43 million. Last year’s millage rate was 28.8241. The new rate was adjusted because of the updated county reassessment numbers. The district will be borrowing about $408,500 from its fund balance, which is currently about $10 million.
Prior to the vote, Sray called spending by the district “out of control.” He added, “We’ve got to stop spending somewhere.”
Board member Bill Newcomer pointed out that South Fayette is the fastest growing district in the state, percentage wise, and that money is needed for future growth in the district.
Board vice president Teresa Burroughs added that more students will be coming into the district in the future because of new and growing housing developments in the township. The high school may need to be expanded in the future because of large class sizes.
Laurie Gray, primary school principal, said that the first and second grade classes are standing at more than 250 students and there are about 220 students registered for kindergarten in the fall, with many more informational packets sent out to families.
The board also voted 7-1 to designate $4 million from unassigned fund balance for future PSERS increases and OPEB (other post-employment benefits). Sray voted against the motion.
Intermediate School update
The board approved change orders for the new intermediate school in the amount of $36,481. Sray voted against the motion and Burroughs abstained. Some of the change orders include adding geo-textile fabric and stone between the edge of the road and a guardrail/fence at $4,067; revising a force main line per the Allegheny County Health department at $17,000; and relocating an existing storm sewer to allow for a new eight-inch gravity line at $5,000.
The grand opening of the new school is set for 9 a.m. Aug. 10.
• The board voted to begin an iPad textbook project for seventh grade social studies for the 2013-14 school year. Budgeted textbook funds from the 2012-13 and 2013-14 school year will be used to cover the cost of the project.
• The South Fayette Foundation for Excellence will hold its second annual golf classic July 8 at the Southpointe Golf Club. Further information can be found on the district’s website at www.southfayette.org.