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D46 Proposes $32.6 Million Tax Levy

Grayslake School District 46 held the first of three 2012 tax levy presentations on Nov. 26.

At an early morning meeting Monday, Nov. 26, the Grayslake District 46 School Board gave its first presentation on the tentative 2012 tax levy.

The school district is requesting a $32.67 million levy, which is an increase of $1.4 million or 4.5 percent over 2011.

Should the district actually receive this increase, the owner of a $200,000 home could expect to pay up to $400 more per year in property taxes, said Anna Kasprzyk, Chief School Business Official.

"A red flag should not go up, because we're not going to get that (amount)," said D46 Board President Ray Millinton of the $1.4 million tax increase.

The increase is more likely to be about $750,000, not $1.4 million, said Kasprzyk.

Last year, the district voted 4 to 3 to approve a $31.9 million levy, which represented an increase of $1.4 million or 4.64 percent over 2010. The district's 2011 tax levy extension, however, was $31.27 million.

The district is limited in how much it can seek to increase property taxes to 5 percent or the rate of inflation, whichever is lower. The rate of inflation is determined by CPI (Consumer Price Index). This year's CPI is 3 percent. Last year it was 1.5 percent.

It is necessary to pursue a higher tax rate, said Kasprzyk, to help offset a 12 percent decrease in the district's EAV (Equalized Assessed Valuation).

"Last year we had a $1.5 million TIF (Tax-Increment Financing) district expiring that we could tax. This year, we don't really have much new property," said Kasprzyk.

Without a levy increase, the budget shortfall would go from $1.2 million to $1.5 million or even $1.6 million, she noted.

The district has already lost $1.5 million in general state aid that the levy requested won't make up for, said Kasprzyk, adding the district will still be short about $700,000.

In September, the board approved a $49.1 million budget that includes a $1.2 million deficit.

Fund increases/decreases

Tax levy increases are requested for six of the district's eight major funds (Educational, Transportation, Working Cash, Municipal Retirement, Social Security and Bond & Interest).

No increase is requested for the Operations and Maintenance Fund. O&M reflects a decrease of $82,000 or 2.29 percent over 2011. There is also no increase requested for the SEDOL IMRF Fund, which shows a decrease of nearly $6,000, or about 16 percent.

The district is requesting a near $21 million levy for the Education Fund, which represents an increase of $1.04 million, or 5.26 percent over 2011.

The Transportation Fund levy request has increased 27.21 percent, Working Cash by 15.06 percent, Municipal Retirement by 11.52 percent, Social Security by 1.37 percent and Bond & Interest by nearly 3 percent over 2011.

Monday's school board meeting, which was not attended by members Michael Carbone, Kip Evans or Shannon Smigielski, was the first of several tax levy presentations that will be held.

The next presentation will be held at the Dec. 5 general board meeting, which begins at 6:30 p.m. at Grayslake Middle School. The meeting will include two public comment sessions.

A third opportunity to review the tentative levy will be at 6 p.m. Dec. 19 prior to the start of the regular board meeting at the Park campus. The school board will vote on the levy during this meeting.

The district must submit its levy request to the Lake County Clerk's Office by Dec. 21.

Updated: District 46 Increases 2011 Tax Levy (2011 levy)

Residents Speak Out Against District 46 Levy Increase (2010 levy)

hotgossip November 28, 2012 at 07:36 PM
Chuck, Did you notice these numbers were from 2010? There are not 16 schools. They say there are 9 in K-8. They are including Park West and Park East as two schools, and they are saying that Prairieview and Early Ed are two schools. This is only one school (Park is one school, Prairieview is one school). Technically, there are only 6. It also says that there is only 13 kids per teacher and that there are only 280 teachers. According to the Union poll, there was at least 320. This is an old statistic.
Terri November 28, 2012 at 07:41 PM
The press and the commentors like to think its all about Grayslake...it's not...it's Hainesville, Round Lake(s), Lake Villa, Third Lake, & Grayslake. The majority of the students in CCSD 46 come from communities other than Grayslake. That's why its proper name is Community Consolidated School District 46.
Angela Sykora (Editor) November 28, 2012 at 08:00 PM
Hi Terri. I don't think it's all about Grayslake, and I know it's not all about Grayslake, But technically I have been wrong referring to the district as Grayslake District 46. For future reference, I will refer to it simply as District 46 or by its full name. Thanks for your comment.
Softball Jim November 28, 2012 at 08:01 PM
Chuck, I can not understand what your data shows. What is the S:T information you are trying to show. If you need a list of the schools in D46 I can help you with that. Avon Meadowview Woodview Prairie View Park School Frederick School and GMS. Does not seem like too many schools to count. Park is K-8 Frederick is 5-6 GMS is 7-8. The rest of D46 schools are K-4.
Terri November 28, 2012 at 08:27 PM
Sorry Angela. Bob what's-his-name over at the Daily Herald pretty much told me to go pound sand when I brought this to his attention politely a couple years ago. That's no excuse for me lumping you all together. Want a good story? Investigate how the old Avon School District was doing back in 86 when Grayslake annexed them. They were thriving and healthy while Grayslake was in trouble. And don't forget to look at how Grayslake pillaged Avon's PTO.
hotgossip November 28, 2012 at 08:27 PM
I meant to write 7, not 6 :)
Tara Strain November 29, 2012 at 04:19 PM
RAISE THE RED FLAG! Historically the levy presentation has been in Nov. with the hearing in the 1st week of Dec. Why isn't that the case this year? Here is why: one board member who wants to increase your taxes (but ran on a platform that she wouldn't) Just left for vacation and won't be back until Dec. 16th. (hence the Early morning meeting- they wouldn't have had a quorum without her). Another member, planning to pull the wool over the taxpayers eyes, isn't going to be able to make the historically held meeting in the 1st week of Dec. Miraculously, they somehow all knew and maneuvered these meetings to accommodate their schedules to ensure the levy would pass. Don't be fooled by the snake oil, levy or not, this was a dirty & underhanded slide of hand. A red flag should most certainly be raised. As a taxpayer in this district, I am DISGUSTED!
Pete Gardner November 29, 2012 at 05:33 PM
Forgive me Tara for trying to understand but may I ask a question? The vote for increasing the levy is historically done the 1st week of Dec.? The school board will vote on the levy at the meeting on Dec. 19th according to the article. Are you saying that 2 board members who are in favor of increasing the levy, which increases property taxes, won't be at the meeting at that is why the vote was moved? They moved a meeting to accodomodate a majority vote? What is happening? Where is the integrity? Where is the respect for the community? Where is the respect for those who they represent? My heart isn't just heavy anymore, its damn mad! Outrageous!
HAL E BERGER November 29, 2012 at 07:56 PM
Here is what I don't understand, and by the way it is very underhanded and tainted to schedule meetings in this manner. Yet the bigger question is WHY? Do they intend to just cave in to the Union and pay up when they don't have the money at taxpayers expense again? Part of this board appears to lack strength and perhaps they are cowards!!! It is very hard to do the right thing and people will be angry with you but sometimes things get tough and you need to stand for what is right. Simply put board members are unpaid, elected by the community, yet I am baffled; Could some of them really not understand the economics of today? Do they not understand that higher taxes puts more families and their homes and our community at risk in this tough time? I am dumbfounded to think that anyone can't grasp or understand the long term impact on children that erosion of an absurd tax burden has on our community, and on our children? I ask who exactly are these people representing, who voted for them, and why exactly do we the people tolerate this? Folks it is time to stop, regroup, and elect a NEW board and go beyond that if that is where the source of the problem lies. This whole country has gone tax crazy, it is nonsense to believe we as a society can sustain all of this. I am saddened for our community, our state, and our country. It is just an insane time and elected officals are proving their failures to do the responsible things more each day.
Jose Cuervo November 29, 2012 at 08:50 PM
Ray Millington, Karen Weinert, Keith Surroz, and Michael Carbone. They are the four board members whose term ends in April 2013. When they were elected in 2009, they ran UNOPPOSED. They all need to be replaced. Will there be 4 people who are strong enough to run? If I could I would but I have conflicts that eliminate me eligibility. God help us all if there aren't 4 other people to choose from.
Terri November 29, 2012 at 10:11 PM
It may be that they represent the portion of our community that respect teachers and quality education. It may be that they aren't "caving", rather, doing what they feel is right and representative of their constituents. Mr Jorrudd was elected by a dozen write in votes. Does he represent the community? Or just the the dozen posting here? The tax impact, on average, is less than 55 cents a day per household (tax deductible) But it's okay to cut the salary of a random few teachers by $17 a day? I guess it's just a perspective
HAL E BERGER November 29, 2012 at 11:31 PM
Jose -- It would be nice if you used your real name --- There are very few reasons a person can't run for the board --- certainly you can see the result of unopposed candidates. I think it is bettter to have open debates like we did and more than a few people running for each seat. -- I ran against several and was elected even though up front everyone knoew I was restricted from certain types of contractual voting. -- Second reason a person can't run of course is because for some reason they are not a qualified as a Grayslake or school district area resident. Here is a cheap idea, so don't run, but start encouraging everyone you know to start calling their board members and showing up at Board meetings and speaking out with your views at the public commentary.
Terri November 30, 2012 at 12:42 AM
Why are names so important to you. I'd run, but I changed my name and seem to be guilty of the felonious activity of teacher support. Oh, wait...
Tara Strain November 30, 2012 at 03:57 AM
If the teachers were respected & represented, there wouldn't be such huge discrrpencies in income for two teachers with similar qualifications. If their leaders (administrators) respected & represented them, they'd freeze their own 6 figure incomes to ensure the teachers were getting what they need. They'd forego their cell phone and gas reimbursement to provide a teacher with supplies for a classroom. They wouldn't hold impromptu meetings to pass a vote for $10,000 honorariums (it's not a bonus, it's an honorarium???) prove to the taxpayer that you can appropriately manage the funds you already have, and the taxpayer support will follow. As long as the mismanagement of budgets & funds continues, the lack of taxpayer respect will follow. And yes Pete, you read my above post correctly.
HAL E BERGER November 30, 2012 at 04:07 AM
That is a fair question why are names important to me? Because people who do not use their names can make any argument, from any position but will never get a vote. Using this forum to basically not have to take responsibility for their comments won't change any point of view the board has. Simply put each NO NAME is meaningless and can just vanish. On the other hand people who are out in the open are more likely to parse their words more carefully and will come out in public to defend their positions. At any decision making forum the shadows who won't come forward may make a lot of noise but have little actual say or impact on anything because they are just that shadows. When I was a board member I had more respect for the person who agreed or disagreed with me that was willing to tell me to my face rather than hide in the shadows as a few are doing here by not using a real name. I did listen to those who came forward. We had a newspaper article much like this a few years ago & as a board we would enjoy the critiques but that's it. We felt that we might actually better understand & respect their views even if we didn't agree with some of them if they just came forward and made a reasonable argument. Some parents can't afford what D46 is trying to do & may be afraid someone will take it out on their children. My view, if you don't come out of the shadows and stand tall nothing will change because this banter without bringing it to reality will go no where.
Terri November 30, 2012 at 12:18 PM
Excellent points; however, I would take issue with the first. The only way 2 teachers with the same qualifications could differ in salary is practical work experience. If a teacher has been with the district long enough to survive the far lower than average starting salary deserves a better salary later in their career. Good business practice in the private sector; why not here?
Terri November 30, 2012 at 12:21 PM
Respectfully disagree. My position would not change one iota. What's in a name? That which we call a rose...
HM November 30, 2012 at 12:58 PM
I disagree Terri - in the private sector, superior performers leap ahead of their average counterparts quite rapidly. If there are 2 employees with the same qualifications, the reward discrepancies are generally diminished realtively fast (within a couple of years). High achievers get rewarded based on their acheivements, not based on years of service. Do a good job, show visible results, and move ahead. This does not happen in education. Teachers/unions are afraid of meaningful evaluations. And the reality is this - when an administrator is in the classroom "evaluating" a teacher, that teacher rarely performs the way they would without the evaluator in the room. Education needs to fine a meaningful way to evaluate their employees, and reward the acheivers, and cut the dead weight. Instead, to the chagrin of the students, all teachers are treated equally - all rewarded the same, regardless of performance. No Terri - that is not how the private sector operates. Since you are not a teacher, as you claim not to be, and you work in the private sector, you should know this.
Terri November 30, 2012 at 01:33 PM
I respectfully disagree. The assumption that teachers perform differently when being evaluated is totally subjective and baseless...unless of course you had some data. "You did great when I was watching you, but you slacked off when no one was around." If a tree falls in the woods when no one is there, does it make a sound? I couldn't agree more that teachers should be subject to authentic assessment. Proposals would have that be test scores which would be anything but authentic. Any ideas? Absent that, the system we have works relatively well. I don't think the disparity is that dramatic anyway and years of quality service should absolutely be considered a "qualification". As for "dead weight", every industry has it. There is a system in place to deal with it, and it is often successfully deployed; however, quite often administration is not willing to do what they need to do because it means work.
Benjamin Dover November 30, 2012 at 01:46 PM
Terri...if I understand your position correctly...if you have a good or above average teacher and a truly outstanding teacher who both have the same qualifications, same degree of education and pracital work experience - they should be compensated equally?
Terri November 30, 2012 at 02:18 PM
No. But absent an authentic assessment process, how do you differentiate? If you look at the history of tenure, you'll find that it was put in place to eliminate inappropriate subjective assessment and hiring practice. If the mayor wanted to replace a successful, career teacher with his wife or daughter, he simply fired one and hired the other. Don't forget...there's an efficient process to eliminate non-performers. The administration has to step up and employ it. I have been in high level, private sector positions for 40 years. I can't think of one where loyal, skilled employees weren't recognized for their commitment.
Benjamin Dover November 30, 2012 at 02:39 PM
Terri...I'm not talking about poor performers or the 1800's when the mayor could do such things...I'm talking about right now - 1 good teacher and 1 truly outstanding teacher. You say there is currently no way to differentiate because there is not an "authentic assessment process". Is that correct? And if so, why do you think there isn't one - because the teachers don't want it or because the taxpayers don't want it?
HAL E BERGER November 30, 2012 at 02:53 PM
That is a lot of nonsense -- please accept my kinder word I wanted to use something much stronger but it isn't appropriate. -- a shadow is a shadow and we have no clue who you are or how your opinions might be biased, change, or not change. Do you trust the internet and unkown sources? -- I DON'T and no one should.
Terri November 30, 2012 at 03:27 PM
Bendover There actually is one, its just not used for compensation. The only way a teacher can get a "Superior" rating is through authentic assessment; but it voluntary. All other teachers are evaluated more traditionally. As a taxpayer, I'd welcome the implementation of AA. Not certain it would save us money, but it would certainly be effective. I think if you asked teachers, they'd agree.
Terri November 30, 2012 at 03:31 PM
Well, Sir...that's your opinion and you're certainly entitled to it. Decision makers know my last name...I communicate with reasonable people on both sides of the aisle face-to-face on a regular basis. You're just obsessed with matters that are insignificant (my last name as well as others) which quite frankly, clouds your credibility. But that's my opinion and I'm entitled to it.
Tara Strain December 03, 2012 at 04:03 AM
Terri's a teacher.
Terri December 03, 2012 at 02:07 PM
Tara As I've stated many times before, I am not a teacher. I have been in high level private sector work for over 40 years. I am not staff or union. I simply have a strong teacher supportive point of view.
HAL E BERGER December 03, 2012 at 03:31 PM
Many remain shadows. Shadows are like what my internet savey friends call the internet trolls. They have a lot to say, they get into the middle of arguments, but generally no one can identify who they are or if they aree even credible.
Terri December 03, 2012 at 03:52 PM
obsessive [əbˈsɛsɪv] adj 1. (Psychiatry) Psychiatry motivated by a persistent overriding idea or impulse, often associated with anxiety and mental illness 2. continually preoccupied with a particular activity, person, or thing n 1. (Psychiatry) Psychiatry a person subject to obsession 2. a person who is continually preoccupied with a particular activity, person, or thing obsessively adv obsessiveness n
HAL E BERGER December 03, 2012 at 04:47 PM
Point made -- no one mentioned a name ---

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