Dear Highwood Parents, Community Members and Fans,
March! It’s hard to believe that we have but three months left in this school year.
Statewide testing will be under way by the time you read this, the state will have given us our budget information for next year and planning for the 2013-2014 school year begins in earnest.
The board will decide whether or not to run a general fund levy at the March board meeting. There is the likelihood though; the district will be requesting a replacement building reserve levy.
The current building reserve levy is in the last of a five year run. A positive vote will not mean new taxes, but just replacement. The building reserve funds, as I’ve stated before, have not been used for routine building maintenance and supplies, but has been used to purchase new or replacement equipment or repairs and upgrades to the building and grounds. In the past five years we have purchased large items such as a new boiler, removed asbestos, remodeled the front of the building including heating the entryway, replaced stage curtains and repaired and upgraded the stage lighting system, upgraded the locker room hot water systems, major painting projects including the gym, upgraded part of the sprinkler system, replaced carpeting, replaced larger cleaning equipment such as a carpet extractor, replaced cooling units in the walk-in cooler and purchased a large walk-in freezer. Regardless of the plans for the reserve fund, we have always budgeted in such a way that we have kept back funds in case an emergency should arise. Aside from that, major five year planning includes a replacement of the football field sprinkler pipes that have been in the ground for almost 30 years, gym floor refurbishing, replacing some grounds equipment, and roof repairs as some examples.
The building reserve fund cannot pay for district personnel and personnel related expenses but is instrumental in making sure our facilities and grounds are in good repair and something our community can continue to look to with pride.
We will be providing more budget and funding information as the month goes on. Legislative sessions are always nail biters when it comes to school funding. Anything is possible, good or bad, and we will work hard at keeping you posted.
Please don’t hesitate to contact me should you have any questions.