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Northampton Area School Board expected to raise taxes -- question is how much?

By Laura Shingles, WFMZ.com Reporter
Published On: Apr 08 2013 10:40:35 PM CDT
Updated On: Apr 09 2013 08:30:05 AM CDT
NORTHAMPTON, Pa. -

The Northampton Area School District’s 2013-2014 budget has undergone several changes since its unveiling earlier this year. Whether those changes will affect taxes depends on how the school board proceeds.

Assuming projected expenditures of $89 million and revenue of $84.9 million, the proposed budget as presented in January increased the millage rate by 3.41 percent to 1.59 mills.

The district initially allocated nearly $854,000 to healthcare costs, but, because the Health Care for America plan passed since the budget was drafted, an additional $500,000 is required for healthcare.

Likewise, a 10 percent reduction in federal programs since the first budget presentation will result in lost revenue of $65,820.

A decrease in grant money and an increase in the cost of accommodating cyber and charter students also alter the original budget.

Superintendent Joseph Kovalchik stressed that these changes are beyond the district’s control and that he does not want to exceed the millage rate originally recommended. But the board may go as high as 1.91 mills.

The proposed budget must be adopted by May 6.