NEWS HEADLINES

Chico School Board approves lower tax rate

By Brian Knox | Published Saturday, August 23, 2014

The Chico school board Monday approved a 2014-2015 tax rate more than 3 cents below the current rate.

The new rate is $1.22359 per $100 valuation – $1.04 for maintenance and operations and $0.18359 for debt payment. The current year’s rate is $1.2581.

The board also adopted a general fund budget of $7,418,955 for the 2014-2015 school year. While that is $170,170 less than the current year’s amended budget, it still represents a deficit of $130,963.

The budget was built with a conservative estimate of student population growth, an important number that affects the wealth per pupil calculation used to determine how much money the district must send to the state.

“Some of that depends on recapture to the state,” Superintendent Mike Jones said. “It’s all built on student counts. We based our projection on relatively flat student growth. We tried to be conservative.

“If we open with more students than we’ve estimated, we send less money back to the state. We’re cautiously optimistic we can hold that or improve that estimate.”

In other business, the board made official some changes in a couple of policies that affect participation in graduation ceremonies, after agreeing to the changes at last month’s meeting.

Beginning with the class of 2018, the school will not issue a certificate of completion to students who fail to pass all their state exams and all of the required coursework at Chico High School. Those students would also not be able to participate in graduation ceremonies.

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