Levy Override Considered

A levy override question gets the go ahead from the Weeping Water Board of Education. Board members voted 6-0 to place another 15-cent levy override issue on the May Primary Election ballot.

The Cassgram reports voters approved a similar measure two years ago 135 to 112. That was for two fiscal years. This question will be for three years covering the 2010-11, 2011-12 and 2012-13 budgets. (Weeping Water had 30-cent levy override authority for the six years previous to the 2008-09 budget.)

“If we don’t need it, we won’t use it,” says Superintendent Brian Gegg.

School districts are under a general fund levy limit of $1.05 per $100 valuation.

The district is tapping just over 4 cents of the levy override authority in the current fiscal year. Gegg says the extra is mainly going for asbestos removal costs.

The board is taking “a pro-active” approach for future budgets, says Gegg, mostly because of uncertainty about future state aid the district will receive. The governor and state lawmakers are devising a strategy on how to deal with a projected $600 million budget shortfall on the state level and school districts are closely watching how they may be affected.

Having the ability to levy a little extra if needed may be just what the district needs to weather out the next couple of years without cutting staff which would lead to a cut in services, says Gegg. “You can talk to anyone in education administration, we’re all a little nervous about what is going to happen with taxes and the economy.”

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