WCCS Board discusses redistricting, tax rate PDF Print E-mail
Written by Janna Ross   
Wednesday, 14 February 2018 09:24

The West Clark Community School Board held their regular board meeting Thursday evening, February 8 at Silver Creek Elementary School. The Board worked through some regular business before hearing a presentation regarding redistricting and what would occur with the tax rate according to the possible different district boundaries.

According to Dr. John Reed, interim Superintendent of West Clark Community Schools, the Board did pass an item that was “out of the ordinary.”

The Board passed a drug/ alcohol testing policy for students. The policy will be for students who drive to school. There will be a $10 charge for driving permits that will be used toward the cost of the testing. The random testing is still in the early planning stage.

“We are still in the forming stages of the policy. It will be random testing for the students who do drive to school,” Reed explained.

The Board also settled negotiations with the teachers and approved a one time 2.5 percent stipend for classified staff (non-teachers) and administration.

During the meeting there were also several class trips approved. Students from Silver Creek Middle School will be traveling to the Grand Canyon, St. Louis, National Battlefield in Shiloh, Tennessee and the Silver Creek High School Marching Band will be traveling to Disney World.

Once the regular business was completed the Board heard a presentation from Damian Maggos of George K. Baum & Company. Maggos presented information to the Board about how the accessed value of property would change according to the different boundary lines the Board might establish if Silver Creek would leave the district.

The piece of land that is taking center stage when discussing boundary lines is in Carr Township at the Silver Creek- Borden line to Perry Crossing and includes the corridor to Highway 60.

“In one option, Silver Creek Township and a section of Carr Township, which is Borden, those piece together would be an assessed value of $678,442,513. The remaining portion of Borden and Henryville would have an assessed value of $606,471,642,” Reed explained.

He continued, “if Borden is not included in that corridor and Silver Creek does not get that piece of Carr Township, the assessed value of Silver Creek is $600,464,581. The remaining part of Borden and Henryville would have an assessed value of $684,449,574.”

Reed went on to explain how the boundary lines could effect projects at Silver Creek without the corridor.

“Right now the current tax rate is just under 48 cents. If Silver Creek would do a $30 million dollar bond it would raise the tax rate 22 cents on top of the current rate. If they would do a $40 million dollar bond the tax rate would raise 27 cents. A $50 million dollar bond would raise 34 cents and a $60 million dollar bond would raise the tax rate 42 cents,” Reed stated. “That would mean if there was a $60 million dollar bond you would be talking about basically 90 cents for the tax rate.”

The next explanation was for if Silver Creek would get the corridor of land in Carr Township.

A $30 million dollar bond would raise the tax rate 15 cents while a $40 million dollar bond would raise the tax rate 21 cents. A $50 million dollar bond would raise the tax rate 27 cents and a $60 million dollar bond would raise the tax rate 33 cents.

“With the tax rates increasing so much it will take the ability of the school district to do a remonstrance. The district would not be able to do much with projects because tax caps will kick in,” Reed said. “The only way to do a project is with a referendum with no tax cap. With that everybody’s tax rate would increase.”

The tax rate increases and redistricting of the school corporation is still just in the discussion stages. The next step will be another presentation to the Board to see what needs to be done to prepare.

“We will be having Bose, McKinney & Evans present on the options the Board needs and what they should be doing to prepare for redistricting and what kind of resources are available to establish a plan,” Reed added.

According to Reed, once the redistricting plan is made the plan will be sent to the Indiana Department of Education to approve or disapprove how West Clark would be divided.

The next meeting of the West Clark Community School Board will be a work session on Thursday, February 22. The meeting will be held in the GPR Room at Silver Creek Elementary School.