LAHS School Board approves increase in mill levy

The Langdon Area High School Board members discussed the budgets for the upcoming school year last Monday night. 


Posted on 8/16/14

By Melissa Anderson

The board members spent a lot of their meeting discussing the need for a 12 percent increase to the school levy.

“The reason for the increase is that the state’s school funding formula now deducts the value  of 60 mills from the per pupil rate for each school district. Langdon Area School District needs to stay close to that  60 mill local levy mark to guarantee adequate funding.

This past year our local district mill levy of only 55.46 created a loss of $7,845 in overall funding.

This coming year a projected increase in taxable valuation combined with a request of the same dollars would mean a local mill levy of around 48 or 49 mills.  That results in a loss of approximately $120,000 in overall funding. “  The Board stated.

The 2013-14 school year saw a deficit of $200,000 in spending. As the 2014-15 school year approached the budget was set at $4.7 million. The increase in budget was a result of a five percent raise in salary for the school staff and administrators along with the increase in electricity, maintenance issues, and the need for new textbooks. The school faced a deficit of over $400,000 if the levy stayed at its current amount.

The school board needs to stay around the 60 mills mark or else they face a penalization from the state which results in a  cut to funding. The LAHS school board has tried to maintain if not lower the budget for the schools. This years budget sees an increase for the first time in five years.

While the school board has voted to raise the levy 12 percent, the mill levy will actually stay around the 55.46 mark. The reason for this is that the taxable valuation for the school district is going to be raised from the current level of $26 million to $30 million.

Due to the increase, the formula the school uses would show the local levy at being below 49 mills.

“It’s not just Langdon facing this problem,  in talking with other school districts, they are doing the same thing” Superintendent Rich Rogers stated.

The board made it very clear that this is increase is not a result of overspending.  It is strictly to maintain the current mill amount due to the increase in taxable valuation.

In Other Business 

• Business Manager, Terian Chaput presented the board with the budget for the 2014-15 school year. She also presented the Financial report.

• Superintendent Rich Rogers presented the board with the Annual compliance report.  LAHS is meeting all requirements.

• Mitch Jorgensen, the elementary principal presented the Consolidated App.

• Tami Flinck was approved as the new assistant Volleyball coach.  Brittney Bowles was also  approved for C squad assistant coach pending participation numbers.

• Football will stay at 11 man through to the 2015 season.

• The bus drivers were approved including new hires, Deb Krahn and Garrett Freier.