Greendale — For the third consecutive year, the Greendale School Board approved a budget that includes a property tax levy decrease.
It will decrease 1.2 percent, or $165,005, from 2015-2016. The full tax levy for 2016-2017 set at $14,412,676.
Additionally, the budget features a tax rate decrease and an expenditure decrease for the 2016-2017 school year.
The tax rate will decrease 2.7 percent to $11.34 per $1,000 of assessed property value. Previously, the rate was $11.65.
For example, a $200,000 home in Greendale will pay $2,268 in school taxes.
The total net expenditures for the district are $34,954,372.31, a 2.85 percent decrease over last year.
How it’s done
Creating a budget with that many decreases isn’t easy, Hajewski said, adding that developing the budget has been challenging the last few years as the district has gotten smaller increases in revenue than in the past.
“The increase in revenue has to offset the usual increases in program costs to meet the needs of all students, as well as salary and benefits costs,” he said. “This year we saw a higher-than-usual increase in our health insurance costs.”
Hajewski said the budget was accomplished through a conservative approach, maintaining a modest fund balance, paying attention to cost-saving opportunities, and other factors.
“The reduction in our local property tax levy is due to an increase in equalization aid from the state,” Hajewski said. “The increase in aid is caused by increasing resident membership and lower property value per student compared to other districts in the state.”
According to a news release on the budget, Greendale schools will receive $12,787,803 state equalization aid, up from $12,473,178 in 2015-2016. Additionally, the equalized property value of the district has increased $19.4 million (1.55 percent) from last year.
Greendale Superintendent Gary Kiltz touted the district’s success, stating it was named a top workplace by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, was honored by the National Association of Music Merchants, among other achievements.
“This outstanding work is accomplished while being ever-mindful of the importance of spending every taxpayer dollar effectively, for the best use in meeting student needs,” Kiltz added.