Jun 30, 2016

School Board Adopts Fiscal Budget

School Board Adopts Fiscal Budget With $315,035 Deficit

At the June 27 meeting of the Hart School Board, HISD Business Manager Teresa Montemayor presented the proposed budget for the year beginning July 1, 2016, and ending June 30, 2017. It has a deficit of $315,035, compared to a $400,000 deficit last year. Revenues are proposed to be $2,763,415 and expenditures, $3,078,450. Local property tax revenue is expected to be $930,000 and the State’s payment, $1,424,708.   Salaries are budgeted at $2,200,000. Estimated fund balance at the end of the current fiscal year  is $2,114,110.

Total taxable value of properties in the district are down $7,613,510 because of lower ag values on farm land, according to Jerry Heller, Chief Appraiser for the Castro County Appraisal District.  This results in about $82,000 less in revenues, according to Heller.

The Board unanimously adopted the budget and approved the tax rate of $1.17/$100 valuation, which is the current rate and the maximum amount allowed by the State for Maintenance and Operations; the district has no capital debt.

Montemayor told the Board that after the April 10 hail storm that hit Hart, the insurance adjuster said there is no damage due to the hail, and the damage present is due to wear and tear. Since many residents have been replacing roofs, the administration has asked for a re-evaluation of the roof, which is 20 years old.

All board members were present at the meeting:  President Erasmo Mata, Steven Reyna, Vickie Chavez, Martha Gonzales and Angelica Ramirez.

Montemayor said that she included in the proposal a final payment of $63,000 to finish paying for a school bus. And, a retention plan that was initiated seven years ago to encourage teachers to stay will be completed with a payment of $21,000. The retention plan is no longer in use.

Revenues are also down, Montemayor said, by $106,000, mostly because of fewer students. She is anticipating 15 fewer students when school begins; 242 students are expected to enroll.

In other action, the Board approved a contract with Brown, Graham and Company of Tulia to perform the upcoming fiscal audit for a $23,000 fee. The CPA firm has been auditing the district  for ten years.

Also, the Board approved paying an athletic trainer $350 a game (football). It was reported that the University Interscholastic League requires an EMT to be present at football games, but not an ambulance. Football is the only sport for Hart required to have an EMT’s presence.

Also approved was the annual premium of $27,745 to Texas Association of School Boards for property, liability and automobile coverage. A donation of $75 to the general fund by Living Faith Christian Church of Plainview was approved by the board; the church requests the money be for the National Honor Society.

Also approved is the purchase of a Kubota lawn mower/tractor from James Brothers Implement Company in Plainview at a cost of $13,600. Interim Superintendent Les Miller said that the current mower is 18 years old and constantly in need of repair.

Resignations Accepted

Resignations accepted were those of Ann Nelson and Melinda Hoffman, elementary teachers. Employed at the June 13 meeting were Callie Ashlock, junior high social studies teacher (has two children to attend school in Hart); Shane McDaniel, junior high science teacher and perhaps, robotics teacher;  and Julie Ann Hathcock, junior high ELA and Language Arts (she had resigned but changed her mind). Miller reported at this meeting that Krista Gregory of Tulia will be the elementary principal. He said no applications of current principals were received. Gregory was the instructional coach at Tulia. Employed Monday were Elizabeth Auscencio, elementary teacher,and Katherine Schulte, instructional coach. Resigning at the June 13 meeting were Rob O’Connor, who is now an assistant principal at Plainview High School, and Lisa Ogelsby, special ed teacher and coach at Hart.

The Board went into executive session to discuss possible appointees to fill the two vacancies on the Board; no action was taken.

New superintendent David Cox met with the board; he will officially take duties July 1. He told the board that the handicap ramps at the school are in need of improvement, and this was discussed.

The June 13 meeting was short, and only necessary items addressed because   of an emergency situation of the father of a board member. Four members were present:  Mata, Gonzales, Reyna  and Ramirez.

At that meeting, the Turnaround Plan was briefly discussed. Secondary principal Ramona Neudorf said that communication and holding all to higher standards are the principles of the Plan. Miller said that hiring an instructional coach should help improve scores. Official results of accountability tests taken in the spring will be available in August.