Board approves budget with mill levy decrease
The way Lansing School Board president Brian Bode figures, no one spoke at a public hearing on the 2005-06 district budget because the spending plan calls for a lower mill levy than last year.
"People seldom have anything to say when we're not raising their taxes," Bode said.
The Lansing School Board on a 6-0 vote with board member Karalin Alsdurf absent approved the budget Monday night after conducting the public hearing. The budget calls for a levy of 48.72 mills, down 2.78 mills from a year ago. A mill is $1 in taxes for every $1,000 of assessed valuation.
In past budget hearings, two to four district patrons had come to voice complaints, Bode said.
Bode said he didn't know if the budget hearing coinciding with the Band Boosters taco dinner and high school open house had anything to do with the lack of patrons.
Schools superintendent Randal Bagby said he wasn't surprised no one came to Monday's hearing. He said he might have expected people who were curious about how the mill rate went down to come and ask questions, but he said it was "unfathomable" that anyone would come to the meeting to complain.
"We did everything we said we would do," Bagby said.
Bagby pointed out that the published budget was to establish the maximum spending authority of the district, but he said the district wouldn't spend all the money.
For example, he said last year's capital outlay budget was $377,208, but the district didn't spend all of it. This year's capital outlay budget is $1.2 million, which includes $121,896 in state aid. The approved budget includes a total of $10.3 million in state aid.
The budget calls for total spending of $19.83 million, up 15 percent from 2004-05's $17.17 million budget. Included in the 2005-06 budget is $1.9 million in debt service, which includes the first payments on the bonds approved by Lansing voters last spring for construction of a new K-5 elementary school and high school auditorium.