By Anya TikkaMILFORD — Delaware Valley Board of Education passed a school tax increase of 2 percent at its June 18 meeting.
After considering proposals ranging from zero to 2.5 percent, the board settled on 2.27 in the preliminary budget, which was available for public comment for 30 days.
Board member Jack O’Leary proposed a zero increase, based on his long-held view that the hard-pressed parents of Delaware Valley students and other residents can’t afford any increases at all in today’s economic climate, with the scarce availability of local jobs.
Pennsylvania has yet to pass its state budget. Some board members have said they wanted to see how much state aid will be coming to DV, which will remain unknown until the state budget is final.
The state pension crisis also looms, with huge amounts due from school districts around the nation, including DV. Superintendent John Bell has stated previously that the crisis will be settled on state level.
Recently, questions have arisen over where the money is coming from to build a new elementary school and gym, repair the swimming pool, and include spectator seating.
The 2 percent increase, approved 5-4, was proposed by new board member Brian Carso, elected by board members last January. He filled the vacant position left by Susan Schor.
Voting with Carso for the increase were Zachary Pearce, Jack Fisher, Chuck Pike, and John Wroblewski. Voting with O'Leary against are Jessica Decker, Pam Lutfy, and Sue Casey.