VALPARAISO — The City Council got its first look at the nearly $86 million proposed budget for Valparaiso Community Schools.
No one spoke at the public hearing held last week.
Chief Financial Officer Sharon Qualkenbush explained the 2022 budget proposal.
About half the budget — nearly $43 million — comes from state funding for educational expenses, including teachers and other school staff members.
Another $20.4 million goes toward other expenses, including transportation, maintenance and utilities.
The district plans to pay $1.4 million toward school pension debt and $4.1 million for debt service outside the referendum. Another $11.3 million is earmarked for paying down debt incurred when the taxpayers approved a referendum for a districtwide capital improvement project that affected every school.
The taxpayers also approved a boost in spending on operating costs. That’s another $5.7 million.
The district’s proposed tax rate is $1.391, well below the 1.454 rate advertised for 2021 but above the 1.1535 actual rate for 2021.
Qualkenbush said the district anticipates higher enrollment.
The City Council is expected to approve the budget Sept. 27. Because the School Board is appointed, not elected, the budget goes to the City Council for approval.