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NR School District approves tax levy increase

The New Richmond School District voted to set the 2017-2018 tax levy at $15,545,247 — an increase of 4.6 percent from last year — at its annual meeting on Monday, Sept. 18 at the high school.

According to Director of Fiscal and Building Operations Brian Johnston, the district's mill rate will see a decrease of .426 from last year, which put the 2017-2018 mill rate at 10.59. With the mill rate drop, taxes on a property valued at $100,000 will decrease by $43.

During the budget presentation, Johnston also ran through a list of major items that affected this year's budget. Those included:

• A $150 per student increase (as of Monday's meeting) in state per pupil aid ($496,600)

• Increase in revenue limit due to enrollment increase of 54 FTE students ($503,000)

• $500,000 in both revenue and expense for hail damage

• 1.5 percent increase in base staff wages

• 9 percent increase in health insurance

• Increase speech teacher 0.2 FTE

• High school English teacher 0.66 FTE

• Instructional ELA coach 0.34 FTE

• Agriculture teacher 0.5 FTE (one semester)

• Assistant athletics director 0.2 FTE equivalent

• Psychologist/RTI coordinator 1.0 FTE

• Bridge program EBD teacher 1.0 FTE

The school district also approved other resolutions on the budget, including setting Monday, Sept. 17, 2018 at 6 p.m. as the time and date for next year's annual meeting.

Regular meeting

Following the district's annual meeting, the New Richmond Board of Education approved a slight increase to the 2017-2018 substitute pay, which amounted to increases in long term substitute, paraprofessional and special education/health aid pay.

After the hail damage from a few months ago, the district needs to replace three 2007 vans used by the IT and special education departments because they were deemed "totaled" according to the district's insurance company. The board approved the purchase of three new vans ($22,495 each) from Bernard's.

Jordan Willi
Jordan Willi is a reporter for the New Richmond News. Previously, he worked as a sports reporter at the Worthington Daily Globe in Worthington, Minnesota. He also interned at the Hudson Star Observer for two summers and contributed to the Bison Illustrated sports magazine at North Dakota State University.
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