Assistant Superintendent for Business Services Bryan Ruud gave details about the financial impact of projects and operating costs under consideration to address projected increased enrollments. He noted that:
- The district has handled recent enrollment growth without going to referendum. Despite experiencing increased enrollments, the last referendum the district had was in 2002.
- Unlike recent referendums in other school districts, Hamilton is not asking for additional taxes to pay for delayed or neglected maintenance. The projects being considered are for classroom space, not maintenance.
- The costs of the proposed solutions are: $42.9 million, which would increase the mill rate by 76 cents, for the intermediate school; $1.5 million, a 44-cent addition to the mill rate, for operating costs; $9.6 million, an 18-cent increase to the mill rate for a high school classroom addition; and $4.9 million, increasing the mill rate by 9 cents, for the applied engineering and technology program update.
- Because debt service has been dropping off, the tax rate trend is down. If all the projects and operating costs were added to the current budget, the mill rate would be 1 cent lower than in 2012-13. The mill rate increase would not come online in one year. As the facilities are constructed and operational costs added after construction of a new school, the tax rate would increase over several years.
- The Hamilton School District has one of the lowest mill rates and per pupil spending in Waukesha County.
- Delayed construction could add as much as 5 percent to the projects over the next two years.
Ruud encouraged School Board members to visit www.HamiltonGrows.com to learn more details.