by Kirk Banghart

On September 1 the Moffat Consolidated School District Board met to discuss placing a mil levy override on November’s ballot. The School Board is facing many financial concerns for the future of the district due to the lack of investment by the state and federal governments. After a lengthy discussions on pro and cons, as well as looking at possible cuts due to lack of funds, the Board unanimously voted to place a mill levy override question on the November ballot.

The question to be asked of the voters will be a two phase mill levy. The voters will be asked to approve the levying of 6 mils for 2011-2013. In December of 2013 the bonds that were approved in 1992 will be paid off. Currently this constitutes 7.2 mils that taxpayers currently pay. The question then will ask for an additional 6 mils in 2014. The intent is by phasing the ballot question the Board of Education is asking the public to raise an additional 6 mils and then continuing to use the current 6 mils for programs instead of bonds.

Moffat School district is facing very uncertain time.  Over the past 2 years the district has seen an unprecedented loss in state funds. For the 2010-2011 school year the district has seen a cut of 8% in funding from state and federal government along with mandated increased costs in employee benefits. The district is forecasting an additional decrease in this year’s funds by an additional 3%. The district has already taken great steps to reduce the district’s expenses, including the reduction of 5 staff positions in the Moffat K-12 alone. The School Board has also looked at the projections for upcoming years and at this time the Board’s projections are for an additional decrease of 6%-10% for the 2011-2012 school year budget. Without the additional local funds the Board and administration will be required to look at extensive program reduction for both the Moffat K-12 school and for the Crestone Charter School.