With so much attention focused at the State Capitol and education funding, some are asking about the numbers in Luther.
Luther Public Schools posts its numbers every month in the Board of Education Agenda packet. Click here for the Monday, April 9 meeting. The first couple of pages include the agenda, followed by about 46 pages of budget analysis, encumbrances, payment registers and payroll. The bills this month range from $10,000 to Positive Changes, a mental health day treatment center, $2500 for AP exam booklets, and the usual bills to buy food for the cafeteria, water from the Town of Luther and fuel for the busses.
The district also will pay $338,438 in payroll this month – including almost $33,000 combined for the superintendent and three principals, $45,000 for health insurance and about $36,600 to the teacher’s retirement system.
When it comes to revenue, the district budgeted for $5.6 million this year. While the biggest expense is payroll and benefits, the biggest revenue sources are Ad Valorem (property taxes) at $3.1 million in Oklahoma Counties as well as part of Logan and Lincoln Counties. The school gets $4,717 from gross production taxes and $295,014 from motor vehicle taxes. Revenue from the School Land Commission and the rural electric coop account for a combined $269,000. Other big-ticket revenue sources are “Title 1 – Basic Program” at $165,480 and Individuals with Disabilities Act at $156,274. The district’s “cash forward” account is at $665,742 to begin next school year.
The school board meeting begins at 6:30 pm. Agenda items include consideration to re-hire two outside consultants who help with the finances. Mr. David Harp, with Harp Educational Services, was hired in 2016 as the district’s encumbrance clerk. Currently, Harp receives $2,000 monthly. Mrs. Allison Brown serves as the District’s Federal Programs Officer and currently receives $525 monthly. The board will also consider re-hiring Mr. Ralph Osborn, CPA, to perform the annual district audit.
There is also a Public Participation Forum on the agenda, and citizens wishing to speak to the board are asked to sign up before the meeting begins. The Luther Register plans to broadcast the meeting at Luther Register News on Facebook.