Less money from the state, the closing of the Ameren power station and increased expenses were all factors in determining the 2012 tax levy for Hutsonville Unit 1.
The Unit 1 school board voted Monday to approve a tentative tax levy of $490,561, up from last year's levy of $475,435. The tax rate is estimated to be around $5.2286 per $100 assessed value.
Preceding the vote auditor David Weger gave the district a clean report, but did note it was down around $240,000 from last year.
Superintendent Julie Kraemer explained Ameren has proposed a stepped assessment reduction on the closed power station. They are suggesting a reduction from $150,000 to $120,000 this year, $80,000 next year, $40,000, then finally $20,000. Kraemer said the deal still has to be approved by other taxing bodies, but said it would be much better than going from $150,000 to $40,000 overnight.
Based on tax levy estimates, Board President Tina Callaway said she expects her own taxes to increase around $75, and that the average homeowner would see an increase of $50 to $75. The levy is expect to be approved during the December meeting.
In cooperation with Palestine Unit 3, the Unit 1 board approved leaving the Little Illini Conference and joining the Little Okaw Valley Conference for the 2014-15 school year in all sports. Palestine and Hutsonville co-op most of their athletic teams and the move would allow them to compete against schools their own size. Recent changes to the LIC have seen Robinson, Olney, Jasper County and Paris added to that conference.
Grade school principal Guy Rumler reported 97 percent attendance for parent-teacher conferences for grades kindergarten through fourth last month. Conference with parents of students with low academic scores were also well attended at the upper grade levels.
The elementary Christmas program will be at 7 p.m. Dec. 6, and the junior high/high school program will be on Sunday, Dec. 9, at 2 p.m.
The board released nearly a year's worth of closed session meeting notes, and designated Julie Kraemer, Lori Crumrin, Sue Gower and Mike Woods to accept nomination petitions for the Unit 1 Board of Education.
Kraemer was directed to advertise for bids for fuel and oil products.
The board accepted the resignation of Brent Nehls as fifth-sixth grade basketball coach, and hired Jeff Carnahan as his replacement. They also approved Kieth Hites as a volunteer assistant for junior high school basketball.
The next scheduled meeting will be Monday, Dec. 17.