Board Budget Hearing/Minutes 6-1-15

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MONDAY, JUNE 1, 2015 - 7:00 P.M., Board Room

I.     Call to Order and Pledge of Allegiance

II.   Communications (News release briefing)
             Introduction of Student Representatives for 2015-2016 School Year
             Introduction of Student Government Officers for 2015-2016 School Year
             State High Project: Design Review 90% - June 8 Board Meeting
             State High Project: Design Review 90% - June 16 Community Information Night

III.  Introduction and Purpose of Meeting
             Budget Hearing for FY2015-2016 School Year

IV.   Presentation to Review Information for Final FY2015-2016 School Year Budget (attachment IV) (2015-16 Budget Summary)
                       (PDE 2028 Revised Final6-1-15)
V.    Public Comment

VI.  Adjournment
Ms. Concepcion called the State College Area School District Board Budget Hearing to order at 7:01 p.m. She welcomed all in attendance and those that will be viewing from home. She announced the Board had an executive session May 18, 2015, on negotiations and personnel. With the agenda before them, she asked board members for any changes, there were no changes.
A copy of all materials distributed to board members for discussion and/or action is included with the official minutes, unless otherwise indicated.
Board members present: Amber Concepcion, Penni Fishbaine, Scott Fozard, David Hutchinson, Jim Leous, Ann McGlaughlin, Jim Pawelczyk, Laurel Zydney (arrived 7:10 p.m.)
Board members absent: Dorothea Stahl
Student Representative: Reilly Ebbs
Board Secretary: Mary Jenn Dorman
Superintendent: Robert O’Donnell
District Personnel: Randy Brown, Jason Perrin, Donna Reinhardt, Chris Rosenblum, Donna Watson, Nick Zepp
Guests: Christina Bokunewicz, Izaiah Bokunewicz, Jaia Clingham-David, Lars deLorenzi, Dan Duffy, James Graef, Rita Graef, Eric Isola, Gillian Warner
Ms. Concepcion noted that the new student representatives to the Board and new Student Government officers would be introduced. Prior to the introductions, Ms. Concepcion recognized Reilly Ebbs noting that during her tenure, she was instrumental in establishing the student representative to the Board and also engaged the current student body to offer the student perspective in the High School project with reviewing the design and providing input.
Ms. Ebbs had the student representatives come to the table and introduce him/herself and the grade each
would be in for the 2015-2016 school year: Eric Isola – Senior, Gillian Warner – Junior, James Graef – Senior, and Jaia Clingham-David – Senior. The Student Government Officers came to the table and Ms. Ebbs noted that two officers were unable to be here this evening - Lilly Sublett – Vice-President and Arshia Badani – Corresponding Secretary. The officers present are: Gillian Warner – President, , Lars deLorenzi – Recording Secretary, Izaiah Bokunewicz – Treasurer, and James Graef – Parliamentarian.
Dr. O’Donnell announced that on June 8, 2015, the design team would be attending the Board meeting to begin the 90% review for the High School project. June 16, 2015, there will be a 90% Design Review for community members at the High School North Auditorium, 6:00 p.m. The review will be the same format as the 30% and 60% reviews with breakout sessions. He encouraged community members to attend and provide input.
Mr. Brown noted he would review information for the Budget Hearing, which is required as part of the process. Administration would share what the upcoming budget is for next year, 2015-2016, so the public can hear and report and/or provide input to the Board.

The Board took a five-minute recess while Mr. Brown set up for the presentation, 7:06 to 7:11 p.m.
Ms. Zydney arrived at 7:10 p.m.
Mr. Brown noted that he would review information for the General Fund Budget – accounts for the expenses related to general operations of the district. He reviewed that the General Operations Fund Budget is required to be completed and submitted by June 30 each year, the budget development timeline noting the Board approved the proposed final budget for 2015-2016 at its May 4 meeting. Tonight is the Public Hearing for the final budget, and on June 8, the Board will approve the General Fund Budget and Resolution, Homestead and Farmstead Exclusion Resolution, and the Annual Tax Levy Resolution. We must comply with Act 1 of 2006, which provides for tax relief for approved homesteads, and the district will receive approximately $1.4 million of gambling funds for 2015-1016 school year that means approximately $109/homestead of property tax relief.
Act 1 Index for 2015-2016 is 1.9%, and the district would be eligible for the Exception for PSERS (pension) costs but the Board chose not to request the exception. The budget reflects a referendum exception that will fund the first year of referendum debt service in 2015-2016 that is interest only, and Mr. Brown reviewed the payment amount ($3,384,493) less estimated state reimbursement ($201,073), the value of one mil ($2,245,213), and millage to pay referendum debt service being 1.4178. The Proposed Tax Increase in Real Estate tax is 5.49% - 1.90% Index based and 3.59% Referendum Exception with an approximate $156 increase to the average homeowner. Mr. Brown reviewed the District’s Historical Real Estate Tax Increase since 2002, the Tax Rebate Program that $200,000 has been set aside for in the 2015-2016 budget, the maximum rebate per household being $650, applications being processed on a first-come basis, one of the three eligibility requirements must be met, household income does not exceed $35,000, must be registered
for Homestead/Farmstead, and claimant received a rebate from the PA Property Tax Rebate Program.
Applications may be submitted beginning July 1, 2015 and additional information will be on our website and sent in the 2015-2016 real estate tax bill mailing. Mr. Brown reviewed changes since the proposed final budget, the local, state and federal revenue, proposed expenses by category and function, expense increases compared to the projected budget of 2014-2015, PSERS (employees’ pension) and use of PSERS fund balance, and the addition to Capital Reserve Fund. Mr. Brown noted that proposed changes of the State Budget could impact revenue, expense and fund balance. None of the proposed changes have been incorporated in the budget, the state budget is required to be passed by June 30 each year, and the district must pass its budget by June 30.
The Final Budget adoption is scheduled for June 8, 2015, the state budget is to be complete by June 30, there is no available information at this time, and the Board would have the opportunity to reopen the district budget after passage of the state budget, if necessary. For more information on the budget process, go to
Dr. O’Donnell and Mr. Brown thanked Ms. Reinhardt and Ms. Watson for their assistance with gathering all the information for the presentation.
There was no public comment.
Ms. McGlaughlin moved and Mr. Leous seconded to adjourn the budget hearing. All board members present voted aye with a voice vote. (Ms. Stahl was absent.) The motion passed unanimously. Ms. Concepcion adjourned the budget hearing at 7:31 p.m.
Submitted by,
Mary Jenn Dorman, Board Secretary