By Amanda Foust
During the Carmel Clay Schools August board meeting, the 2016 Budgets, Three-Year Capital Projects Fund Plan and Twelve-Year Bus Replacement Plan were presented in detail addressing projected changes for the upcoming year. Each plan was presented again during a public hearing on Sept. 28.
Associate Supt. for Business Affairs Roger McMichael led the discussion. He explained funding is based on a calendar year while the schools operate from the school calendar and noted this can sometimes make planning difficult.
The presentation highlights included an understanding of the budget being made up of six funds—general, referendum, transportation, bus replacement, debt service and capital projects. Some changes to expect are the following: salary budgets reflect a 2 percent salary increase and a 1.5 percent performance bonus for eligible employees.
Health and dental insurance premiums are projected to increase 5 percent in the next year. Favorable fuel prices are helping the transportation budget, and that is planned to continue. CCS is planning to replace 16 buses with the bus replacement fund.
The Capital Projects Fund was highlighted as well. CPF has a current maximum tax rate of $0.2185 and a maximum levy of $14,534,828. The first year of the plan is when a tax rate is established.
“Years two and three are subject to change. We have not yet collected money for those years,” McMichael said, “Invariably the second and third year will change by the time we get there.”
The board is anticipating the second and third year in the budget they presented. The school is making sure it is positioning itself in a way that if future projects were needed, the budget would be able to accommodate.
“We want to be sure we receive all the money we are entitled to, so the first year is always inflated because they can reduce it,” McMichael said.
The final hearing with the board will be on Oct. 26 before the budget is sent to the state for final approval.