GFW Board of Directors Approves 2.9% Levy Cut | News, Sports, Jobs


GIBBON – The Gibbon Fairfax Winthrop (GFW) School Board unanimously set the tax levy payable for 2022 at $ 2,520,082.77 on Monday.

The action came on a motion by board member Mike Kuehn, seconded by Drew Schmidt. The levy is 2.9% ($ 74,289) lower than the levy payable in 2021.

The levy is a $ 26 school tax reduction on a $ 100,000 house, a $ 40 reduction on a $ 150,000 house, and a $ 53 reduction on a $ 200,000 house.

During a Truth in Taxation presentation, Michael Hart, director of public finance for PMA Securities, said the tax is only part of the school district’s budget and most of the district’s funds come from the school district. State of Minnesota.

“Property values ​​have increased, which has helped lower your tax rates” Hart said. “The school district borrowed $ 1.3 million in fiscal 2019, $ 2 million in fiscal 2020, and $ 2.5 million in fiscal 2021, but it didn’t is not necessary to borrow money at the moment. It is a very great accomplishment.

Hart said the school district is expected to have a surplus for fiscal year 2022.

“There are a lot of financial opportunities for you. Your debt is paying off soon, “ Hart said. “The Ag2School Tax Credit (passed by the Minnesota Legislature to reduce farm taxes owed for the payment of school obligations) is a really powerful tool for you. This is a transfer of money from the metro to rural school districts that have bipartite support. This helped many districts to accomplish the tasks they had to do.

Hart said the district’s outstanding bonds will be repaid at the end of fiscal 2022 and 2024.

“The district has made significant progress on the financial goals of its strategic plan”, Hart said. “There are many opportunities available to us to continue to progress. Interest rates are very low.

The council also has:

• Received an audit of the 2020-2021 financial statements from Blaine Abdo d’Abdo, Eick and Meyers. The average daily membership was 711 in 2017, 702 in 2018, 689 in 2019, 686 in 2020 and 674 in 2021. The district general fund balance at the end of fiscal 2021 was $ 10,889,239.

• Meeting with management (in camera) to discuss Superintendent Jeff Horton’s assessment. The results of the meeting will be released at the January 2022 board meeting.

• Casey Prochniak, recognized board member, who received a certificate from the Minnesota School Board Association for completing workshop training.

• Heard surv. Jeff Horton mentioned that the school district was one of two in Minnesota to receive a $ 233,000 grant from the Minnesota Department of Education which he says can be used to bring communities together to create opportunities for students such as extended learning and after-school programs.

• School District Facilities Manager Dave Sellner reported that OSHA’s required indoor air safety and awareness training has been completed. He said Alpha Wireless will update the building radios that are being programmed.

In addition, he said that the PAAPA company fixed some boiler issues at Winthrop School and that Dashir Management fixed a large crack in the steps of the west entrance to Gibbon School.

• Elementary principal Jennifer Thompson said the continuous improvement team and coaches are planning literacy activities and a lecture-a-thon fundraising event for “I love reading” month of february.

Thompson said more than 90% of families have attended conferences. A field trip for children in grades 3 to 4 has been postponed to January 7, 2022 due to a winter storm.

She said elementary staff are planning a holiday potluck and an after school reunion.

• Donations accepted, including $ 1,000 from Georgia Messner for orchestra and choir, $ 5,000 from Central Region Cooperative for FFA, $ 1,735 from Prairie Lakes Art for artistic projects; $ 120 from the Blackbaud / Ecoland Giving Fund; and $ 100 for art supplies from the Winthrop General Federation of Womens Clubs.

• Board member Drew Schmidt called for agenda additions including scheduling work sessions and discussing school bus loading at Winthrop School. Board chairman Mike Kuehn said loading and unloading buses on the highway should be avoided. Schmidt suggested meeting with the district transport manager to find a solution.

A working session was scheduled for 5:30 p.m. on Monday, January 3, before the January meeting on the reorganization of the board of directors.

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