Lehigh Valley

Northwestern Lehigh School District passes 2014-15 budget with no tax increase

NEW TRIPOLI, Pa. - Northwestern Lehigh School District can now boast four years in a row without a tax increase.

The school board unanimously passed the 2014-15 budget at its board meeting Wednesday evening.

The budget amounts to 15.9631 mills or a zero mill increase. Budget expenditures amount to $39 million and revenues total $38 million. The $1,178,199 shortfall will be covered by way of the fund balance..

Superintendent Dr. Mary Anne Wright said the budget preserves the high quality of the school district and its many programs.

"We are able to maintain current levels of programs, both academic and extracurricular," she said. "We believe it's the responsible thing to do for our students, our employees and community."

Board Vice President Paul C. Fisher Jr. recognized the board and district staff for their work on the budget.

"It's the collective effort of everyone involved that this is even possible," he said.

The board also unanimously approved the transfer from the general fund to the capital reserve in the amount of $436,700. The amount consists of $296,500 for future capital improvements and $142,200 for fleet replacements.

Board President Darryl Schafer told board members school districts may have to alter and reopen their budgets next month as numbers might change due to the state approved budget.

In other business, the board unanimously approved school lunch prices for 2014-15. Prices will increase by 10 cents.

Approved prices are $2.45 for elementary school students, $2.60 for middle school students, $2.85 for high school students, $3.85 for adults and $1.50 for breakfast.

The board also unanimously approved the law firm of King, Spry, Herman, Freund & Faul, LLC, as district solicitor for 2014-15.

Also during the meeting, the Northwestern Lehigh High School Science Olympiad Team presented to the board its team and the various local, state and national competitions they competed in over the past academic year. The team consists of over 50 members.

Team members present at the meeting included Amy Lebrecht, Jake Steidinger, Brett Scott, Devon Devers, Brandon Herb, Danan Haas, Mike Sipos, Daniana Ford and Grace Schoeniger. The students won various medals throughout the year.

"We worked very hard this year and it showed," Lebrecht said.

Board member LeRoy Sorensen asked the board to consider increasing funding for the team.

"I'd like to see it [funding] elevated near the top of the list if not at the top of the list," he said.

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