School Board to Vote on 2011 Tax Levy

Proposal is a 4.77 increase over last year's levy, but will likely be adjusted downward once property value totals are known.

Board members are scheduled to vote tonight on the estimated 2011 tax levy for .

The tentative levy request would seek just more than $149 million in property taxes, which make up about 76 percent of the district’s revenues. The amount represents a 4.77 percent increase over last year’s extension of $142 million.

While the final levy is scheduled to be adopted on Dec. 12, the district will have until April 1, 2012, to make adjustments.

According to a report from Assistant Superintendent for Admistrative Services Gary Grizaffi, the requested levy amount will likely be higher than the actual levy. That’s because this year’s equalized assessed valuation (EAV) of all properties within the district and new property values are still unknown.

But according to district projections, property value totals are expected to decline sharply in 2011. Even though the district estimates adding $25 million in new construction growth, Grizaffi’s report shows an estimated EAV loss of $178 million, or 6.55 percent, within the district.

By approving the tentative levy, the district will be able to request the maximum amount of property tax dollars allowable under tax cap laws. For 2011, any levy increase is capped at 1.5 percent.

If the final extension approved is in excess of the amount of funding actually needed, the board has until the spring to abate the excess taxes.

To view this year's tentative levy proposal, click here

Marie November 16, 2011 at 02:53 PM
peteee363, Here is a copy of a post I made several months ago when another person suggested merit pay. I never got a reply from him but I look forward to hearing what you have to say about the points I made. A teacher can be the best but if his/her students do not care enough to do well in class or on tests, that is not the fault of the teacher. How would salaries tied to test scores work with teachers in SpEd, Music, PE, Art, Home Ec...where tests scores can not be tied? What other profession has their success or salary determined by someone else? Take a dentist for example. He/she can teach their patients all about brushing and flossing but it's up to the patient to do it. When the patient doesn't do what they've been taught, the dentist is rewarded with a higher salary. A doctor is the same. They can teach you to eat healthy, exercise, quit smoking...but if the patients don't do what they're taught, the doctor's salary increases. Back to teachers and students. Would all of the kids with an IEP be in one class? How about the teachers of the Challenge and Honors programs? Their students should be scoring much higher than the others so do those teachers get a higher salary because they have "gifted" students? I would like to hear how you would apply merit pay to teachers.
Dori November 16, 2011 at 03:18 PM
Maybe there should be some sort of teacher/private citizen panel on suggestions on how we could try to use the budget more efficiently; no one person has all of the answers. I personally am not fond of merit pay for teachers. As Kristie points out you can't pick and choose who is in your classroom. You could have five disruptive students and twenty five great kids that want to study and the teacher could still fall far behind because of the constant disruption of the five. Also when you have merit pay/raises it creates problems within the staff, it can get ugly and you certainly don't want to lower moral or create such undo pressure when really most teachers are doing their best to educate the kids and look after their well being. Maybe the top notch administrators should take a reduction in pay; lots of people outside of school districts are taking reductions, not getting raises etc. I don't see how we can have a fairly new teacher, let's just use a salary of $45,000 for argument sake, say they have been in the district four years, we started them already out on line four of the contract, they interview for an assistant principal job and get the job, now just because we have it listed as a salary of $80,000 that teacher who has very little experience will now be bumped up to $80,000 without them even knowing if they will even work out in the position. Maybe it's just me, but I find this crazy. Ultimately, I think we all want what’s best for our community.
Kristie November 16, 2011 at 03:30 PM
Assuming that you are correct and test scores were higher in 1940's, what type of material was being tested? More than likely, the test scores do not include students with disabilities because it wasn't until 1975 when Public Law 94-142 gave students with disabilities the right to attend public school. Marie brings up a good point. What about doctors and dentist? You could also add nurses, nurse practitioners, dental hygienists, counselors, social workers and many others to that list.
Kristie November 16, 2011 at 10:32 PM
I'm talking about the teachers in VVSD. What specific ideas do you have to make merit pay fair for teachers? Will you hold parents responsible if the students come to class unprepared? Will you hold the parents responsible if the students fail to show up to class? Will teachers in the honors classes get paid more because their students score higher on tests? Will special ed and ELL teachers be paid less because their students score lower on tests or can't take the test at all? How will fine arts teachers be scored? Will PE teachers be scored less if they have a bunch on non-atheltic students? I'm really interested in your specific ideas. What to you have to say about the annology of teachers to doctors, dentists, nurses...? Their pay is not based on merit and they work in the private sector.
Kristie November 17, 2011 at 09:15 PM
peteee363, You haven't answered any of the questions. You said that merit pay "works for everybody in the private sector" but you are wrong. As has already been said, doctors, dentists, nurses...are all paid more when their "students" fail to do what they have been taught to do. You compare private schools to public schools but you forget that private schools get to pick and choose which students they allow to attend when public schools can not do this. To make it easier for you, can you come up with one idea how merit pay will work for a special education teacher? We can deal with all of the other areas of teaching after you answer this. School vouchers do not address how merit pay will be determined.


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