School districts prepare budgets, wait for millage changes

Published 7:00 am Saturday, July 23, 2016

Now that Pearl River County Tax Assessor Gary Beech announced an increase in property values, local school districts have been working on their budget proposals for next year.
Lisa Persick, the Picayune School District finance director, said the Picayune School Board approved next year’s budget, asking the city of Picayune for $8,408,624 in ad valorem funding.
The amount was approved by the Board on June 28 and will be sent to the Picayune City Council, said Persick.
“What we’re requesting is not going to cause a tax increase,” said Persick.
For the 2015-2016 school year, the Picayune School District requested $8,262,728, said Persick.
The $145,896 increase in the budget was in part recommended by the state, said Persick. From 2012 to 2015, Persick said the school district requested the same tax funding from the city, $8,242,441.
The Pearl River County School District also submitted their budget to the county for next year, said PRC Business Administrator TJ Burleson.
For the fourth year in a row, the Pearl River County School District requested $5,056,676 in ad valorem funding, said Burleson.
“We have not asked for one red cent more in ad valorem taxes for the past four years,” said Burleson. “What [county property owners] paid in taxes last year, they should pay in taxes this year.”
The PRC School District budget was sent to the county, who will set the millage rate, said Burleson.
The Poplarville School District has completed their initial budget proposal for next year, said Chief Financial Officer for Poplarville School District Samantha Sandifer. As of now, Sandifer has budgeted $4,728,280 in ad valorem taxes.
In August, Sandifer said she will submit a request form to the school board who will discuss the amount further before presenting it to the county.
The school district may not receive the same amount as was originally budgeted, said Sandifer.
Last year, the operating budget from ad valorem taxes for the Poplarville School District was around $4,716,983, said Sandifer.

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About Julia Arenstam

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