By DON STINE
Neptune City residents will see a 4.9 cent increase in their 2014/2015 school tax rate under a budget introduced on March 25.
The total $8,369,442 budget is down $64,455 from last year’s $8,433,897 total budget.
The public hearing is scheduled for April 29.
School Business Administrator Bill Folk said the total budget is down because the district saw less revenue in the new budget.
“Revenues drive appropriations and the less revenue, the less appropriations we can have,” he said.
The tax levy, or the amount to be raised through taxation, has increase to $5,566,358, up $211,658 from last year’s $5,354,700 total tax levy.
The school tax rate will increase by 4.9 cents, or from $1.23 for each $100 of assessed valuation to almost $1.28.
Folk said state aid went down by $12,000 this year, or from $2,145,228 last year to $2,159,028 this year.
Folk said that $609,556 from surplus was applied to the budget where $911,232 was applied last year. He said $250,000 remains in surplus.
The school district’s debt service is $535,261 where last year is was $536,928
Folk said cost increases this year particularly reflect increased tuition and program costs for special education students.
Enrollment in Neptune City’s school, which is kindergarten through the eighth grade, is 397 students, with about more 170 going out-of district to high school, particularly to Neptune.