Centerville to make $2.6M in cuts

District also approves 6.9-mill operating levy

Centerville Board of Education President Dr. David Roer said the $2.6 million comprises cuts to expenditures, including programming changes and the reduction of 13 net positions, and increased revenue via student fees.

“Almost all areas in our schools, both academic and extracurricular, will be touched by these changes,” Roer said.

Details on these specifics were not released Monday night as the school board approved the May operating levy. These additional cuts and levy placement come on the heels of a 5.9-mill levy failure in November, and cuts of 63 positions and $12 million during the last four years.

“The failure in November means that we will not get any new revenue for all of 2013,” Superintendent Tom Henderson said. “Even if we pass in May, the first new collection is in 2014. We lost $9.8 million in revenue that we would have received with a levy passage in November.”

The May levy, if passed, is expected to cost the owner of a $100,000 home $211.31 annually, and generate $11.4 million each year for the district.

“Our revenue stream continues to dry up,” said Superintendent Tom Henderson, referring to multimillion-dollar federal and state cuts that include the Tangible Personal Property Tax. “And we’re concerned we’re not going to get any more money from the state. In fact, we’re afraid we’re going to be cut further.”

Treasurer Mitch Biederman added that the district is operating in deficit spending, in that it is spending more than it is taking in. He said the district had a carryover balance of $19.65 million at the end of fiscal year 2012 in June, and expects a carryover of $11.45 million in June 2013.

The district’s expenditures for 2012 were $83.8 million, according to the five-year forecast filed in October with the Ohio Department of Education. Those expenditures are projected to increase to $92.1 million in 2015.

“That (rise in expenditures) is due to step increases and increased medical insurance costs,” Biederman said. “We are self-funded now (for medical insurance), so that should help. We have one more year under our current (staff) contract, and hopefully we can do something about those costs as well.”

Centerville’s administrators have been under a base pay freeze since 2010; the remainder of the staff, since 2011.

Centerville City Schools, which serves roughly 8,000 students in southern Montgomery County, has received top ratings of “Excellent with Distinction” or “Excellent” from the ODE for 13 straight years.

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