There’s a whole new program with almost 130 new students in the Cedarburg School District this school year. And as the first year of the district’s 4-year-old kindergarten program is now well underway, the new program may benefit district taxpayers.
Cedarburg residents could see a decrease in school property taxes in 2017, as the 2017-18 budget calls for a 0.94 percent decrease to a levy of $21.5 million.
“The introduction of our 4K program is something we’re pretty excited about,” said Director of Business Services Ben Irwin. “It went smoothly in the start-up process, and the increase in enrollment in turn leads to more revenue and more funding.”
The equalized value of the district is estimated to increase by 3.2 percent, but Irwin said cost savings last school year should benefit the district moving forward.
“We ended up underspending last year, primarily due to a construction project that had to be pushed back and underspending for utilities since we had a mild winter,” said Irwin, who took over as the district’s director of business services in July.
The school board held its annual budget hearing on Sept. 21, understanding variables like final enrollment numbers and the district’s equalized value could impact the numbers prior to final approval in November.
Based on the projections, Irwin said residents can anticipate a mill rate of $9.44 per $1,000 of equalized property value, resulting in a $118 savings on a $300,000 home.
“It’s also exciting to note we have one of the lowest mill rates in the area,” Irwin said, citing Mequon-Thiensville, West Bend, Germantown and Hamilton as the others.
Final numbers for employee benefits, property values, state aid and enrollment are yet to be determined, which can impact the final budget.
“Nothing is written in stone at this point, but I’m fairly confident the numbers won’t change significantly between now and when the levy is certified in November,” Irwin said.