LACEY – The total budget will decrease slightly, but the amount to be raised in taxation will increase after the Lacey Township Board of Education adopted its budget.
The total budget will be $73,566,211, a slight decrease of $46,266 from the current year’s budget of $73,612,477.
The amount to be raised in taxation will be $45,642,489. This was a figure projected in March as a middle-of-the-road scenario of how the budget was expected to fall. It is an increase of $894,951 over the current year’s $44,747,538. This works out to be a 2 percent increase, which is the cap set by the state. During the 2016-17 school year, the levy was $44,747,538. These figures do not include debt service.
The tax rate would increase by .012, from 1.267 to 1.279.
On an average home, based on the township average of $275,600, the taxes would be $3,524.11. This would be an increase of $39.86 over last year’s $3,484.25.
According to a budget presentation given in April, the budget was 82.6 percent salaries and benefits. Capital projects was listed at 1 percent. One capital project on the horizon is to replace boilers in the Lanoka Harbor School.
School business administrator Patrick DeGeorge said that the positive aspects of the budget include that the total has gone down, and that the district has had a few years of decreasing debt service due to refinancing.
The negative aspects include that the aid given by the state has remained flat while the cost of running six schools has gone up.
Other additions to the district include a school resource officer who will serve as a liaison between the school district and police, Superintendent Craig Wigley said. This is a first for the district.
The other full-time staff member to be added is one special education teacher for the kindergarten through fourth grade, who will be trained in autism, he said.
There will be two part-time assistant basketball coaches assigned for the Middle School, one for boys and one for girls.