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JCSD board OKs preliminary budget

Spending plan for Juniata Co. up for final vote in June

The Juniata County School District Board of Directors narrowly approved a preliminary budget for 2021-2022 which includes a 3.9 percent tax increase.

The proposed budget of $43,830,618, includes a real estate tax of 68.0486 mills, a five $5 per capita tax, a residence tax of $5, a $10 flat rate occupation tax, a 1 percent real estate transfer tax, a 1 percent earned income tax and a 5 percent amusement tax.

Board members were split 4-4 in an initial vote during its business meeting Thursday night in Mifflintown. Directors Kenneth Dupree, Angela Wagner, Mark Wagner and Troy Woodward voted in favor of the proposed budget; directors Malinda Carvell, David Fry, Douglas Kline and Angela Varner voted in opposition. Joseph Shearer was absent.

After much deliberation over the tax increase, Varner made a motion to reconsider her vote.

In a second vote, Varner voted in favor of the budget, giving the proposal a 5-4 majority.

The proposed budget is subject to final board approval in June.

Until that time, Business Manager Richard Meily and Superintendent Gary Dawson encouraged board members to approach them with specific ideas about balancing the budget with a lower or no tax increase, as that seemed to be the sticking point for those not in favor of the spending plan.

They said changes can be made to the plan until final board approval in June.

Thursday’s approval of the preliminary budget further authorized display and advertising of the district’s spending plan for 2021-2022.

Also during the meeting, the board approved:

¯Meeting minutes from the April 15 meeting.

¯Minutes from the May 5 board workshop.

¯Financial reports and bills for payment.

¯Contracting with Nittany Learning Services for the delivery of alternative education services for disruptive youth.

¯Apple Inc. price quote.

¯First reading of revised JCSD Policy 709, Building Security.

¯Facility use requests for Wes Diehl, Thompsontown Baptist Church, East Juniata High School softball field, Tuesdays and Thursdays from May to June, church softball; and Robert Landis, River Church, Juniata High School/Tuscarora Junior High School lawn, July 10, prayer gathering.

¯Food Service Management Company Renewal Year Cost Reimbursable Contract, June 1, 2021 through June 30, 2022.

¯Richard A. Meily II as treasurer of the Board of School Directors for a one-year term and Polly S. Digon as a secretary of the board for a three-year term.

¯Revised Policy 810.1, School Bus Drivers and School Commercial Motor Vehicle Drivers (which replaces current Policy 810.1, Driver Alcohol and Drug Abuse Policy, and Policy 810.2, Cell Phone Use/Bus Drivers), and Policy 810.4, School Vehicle Drivers.

¯Sale of two district vans to Mike Maykut’s Towing for a price of $1,025.

¯First reading of Policy 146.1, Trauma-Informed Approach, and first reading of revised Policies 113.3, Behavior Support; 203, Immunizations and Communicable Diseases; and 233, Suspension and Expulsion.

¯Establish a special education teaching position at Juniata Elementary School, effective with the 2021-2022 school year.

¯Resignation of Tanya L. Wolfe, Juniata High School paraprofessional, effective April 19; and James P. Towsey, EJHS part-time custodian, effective May 28.

¯Employment of Tyler S. Clark, special education teacher at JES, effective Aug. 23, contingent upon receipt of certification. Clark replaces Nancy Brackbill, who is retiring.

¯Employment of Makyla A. Seeger, Kelly L. Crouse, Julia M. Sanders, Lori L. Chubb, Matthew A. Wetzel and Tabbetha J. VanHorn-Price as instructors for a summer instructional program at an hourly rate of $35, paid through grant funding.

¯Benjamin Wagner and Benjamin Tyson as summer 2021 workers at an hourly rate of $9.75.

¯Transfers, effective with the 2021-2022 school year: Bobbie J. Kerstetter, from an East Juniata Elementary School special education teaching position to an East Juniata Elementary School Title 1 teaching position; and Jessica L. Brosius, from a Juniata Elementary School special education teaching position to an East Juniata Elementary School special education teaching position.

¯Two requests for maternity leave.

¯Conference requests for Travis Quici, PA State Athletic Directors Association Conference, May 27, Hershey; and Amanda Lightner, AP Language and Composition, June 28 to July 2, Online Summer Institutes/Allegheny Intermediate Unit.

¯First reading of Policies 340, 440 and 540, Responsibility for Student Welfare; and first reading of revised Policies 333 and 433, Professional Development.

¯Extracurricular positions: Abby Corman, girls soccer assistant coach; and Jeff Becker, volunteer girls soccer coach.

¯First reading of revised JCSD Policy 123.2, Sudden Cardiac Arrest.

¯First reading of revised Policies 805.1, Relations with Law Enforcement Agencies; 805.2, Emergency Preparedness and Response; and 907, School Visitors.

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