Juab School District Board of Education voted Wednesday to impose the additional two-mill tax levy allowed by last year's Legislature.
Homeowners in the district can expect an increase in taxes of somewhere between $11 to $18 depending on the value of the property.One benefit to parents and students in the district is that transportation fees for student activities and field trips will be eliminated. The district will now pick up that tab.
Last September, voters in the district voted against the leeway, though it was defeated by a small margin - 598 to 485. The board decided to impose the levy on Wednesday after discussing the problems of financing education in the district.
The board never did have to ask for voter approval for the leeway, since the Legislature gave boards the authority to impose the levy in and of itself and did not require boards to have a voted leeway.
When the Legislature gave local school boards the authorization to impose an additional two-mill tax for school expenses the local school board decided to seek voter approval.
Superintendent Kirk Wright said the board decided to take the action because the district needed the $95,000 the two-mill levy will produce.
"All but six districts have voted to impose the two-mill levy," said Wright. "Our district was one of the six." However, said Wright, the district is facing the problem of larger enrollments and less money to pay the costs of a larger student body.
Enrollment in the secondary schools is increasing dramatically, said Wright. In just the last two years, 61 extra students have been added to the rolls at Juab Middle School and Juab High School. Wright said the district expects another 60 students on the secondary level by the beginning of the 1991-92 school year.
As the schools become larger they lose money. Wright said the increased enrollment had resulted in the loss of "small-schools" funds from the state. The district is not large enough, however, to generate the needed monies without the added two mills.
Part of the increase in enrollment at the middle school and high school level, said Wright, is the shifting of the large class loads from the elementary schools to the secondary schools as the large census years are now hitting the secondary schools. In spite of the larger census on the secondary level, the elementary schools are remaining somewhat static. Even in those classes where enrollment has dropped slightly, the difference has not been enough to allow a reduction of staff on the elementary level.
"We would have to lose 20 to 30 students per grade on the elementary level," said Wright, "before we could significantly reduce staff."
The additional money brought in by the two-mill increase, said Wright, will be used to provide two teachers on the secondary level. One will be added at the high school and one at the middle school.
The two new positions will cost the district approximately $45,000, he said.
Of the remaining money, said Wright, $15,000 will go for additional textbooks and supplies, $15,000 for school equipment and repairs, and $7,000 for transportation fees for student activities and field trips.