Logan Elm School Board Approves Five-Year Financial Plan

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The Logan Elm school board approved its five-year financial forecast and honored several students for their academic achievement during Monday’s board meeting.

The forecast projects the district’s finances, including end-of-the-year and end-of-term balances.

“If the projections on the governor’s proposal come through, then we would increase in funds of about $350,000 this fiscal year,” said Nick Roberts, district treasurer. “Those were estimates based on the new formula from [The Ohio Department of Education]. Our forecast is dictated big time by these numbers.” Roberts said the prospect of additional funding is always encouraging.

“We were at $6.9 million, and they were projecting us at $7.3 million and then $7.7 million,” he said.

One of the largest lines on the district budget is staff salaries, he said, which will see an increase due to negotiated raises.

“Our big increases this year were our salaries, because we did negotiate the 1.75 percent to the teachers and we gave all our other staff the 1.75 percent,” he said. “With that, your benefits also increase because of retirement and Medicade, but we did get 10 percent health insurance from the staff. It was at six percent, and premiums only went up .6 percent, so the district probably broke even on health costs.”

Roberts also said the amount of money from state and federal programs the school will receive was down about $32,000 from last year, and he emphasized the importance of the renewal levies in 2015.

“We project to be $277,000 to the good for fiscal year 2014, and about $77,000 to the bad for fiscal year 2015,” Roberts said. “The big thing to point out is that for 2016, 2017 and 2018, if we don’t renew the income tax levy in 2015, we’re in big trouble. We would potentially lose $6 million in total if those aren’t renewed.”

Sally Kleon, principal at Logan Elm High School, kicked off the award segment of Monday’s meeting, presenting to the board several awards and accomplishments from students.

“We wanted to honor the Logan Elm Marching Band for qualifying for state competition, and that’s pretty much become a tradition around here,” she said. “We wanted to congratulate them. They will be competing on Nov. 9.”

Lane Johnson was honored as a Pickaway County Council on Youth Leadership winner, receiving a $1,000 scholarship and a trip to St. Louis next Saturday. Adam Agosta was the runner up in that competition and received a $500 scholarship.

“Lane has won our leadership award this year,” she said. “Along with that, he will be attending a conference in St. Louis, he’ll be leaving Saturday night of Pumpkin Show.”

The school also honored Joe Miller for earning the Walter Hall Community Service Award that came with a $100 scholarship; Trent Congrove, who won the Richard B. Fisher Outstanding Essay Award; and Taylor Riddle for being a National Merit Commended Student.

“Taylor Riddle is a national merit scholar,” she said. “If I remember right, there are something like 1.5 million students that take the PSAT test, and only 35,000 of them are commended. We’re very proud of her.”

Tim Williams, superintendent, said it has been a great start to the school year academically, athletically and artistically with the music and arts department.