USD 377 Board of Education members turned their sites toward the new school year as they took step to organize the business structure for the Atchison County Community Schools operations and budget preparations.

Melissa Gormley, was re-appointed to her position as board clerk; Kathy Enzbrenner reappointed to serve as deputy clerk and Steve Caplinger, was re-appointed to serve as the Treasurer of the Board of Education. Larry Mears was appointed to serve as the school attorney for the 2021-2022 school year.

Board members heard a report from Atchison County Counselor Patrick Henderson and Don Ball on behalf of the Atchison County Neighborhood Revitalization and Tax Rebate Incentive Program that has been revised throughout the course of its existence. Board members discussed the renewal of the district’s participation. The current plan expires in October. The new plan offers participating entities the option to participate in the basic non-target plan and an additional option to also participate in the part of the plan with an emphasis on targeted areas. The Plan core incentive is to offer a tax rebate to property owner who make eligible structural improvements. Taxes paid to the participating taxing entities are rebated back to the property owners enrolled in the program via a percentage rate throughout the specified period of time according to the program’s guidelines.

Superintendent Andrew Gaddis reported on the expenditures and status of the monies received in wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The monies were spent on technology upgrades such as hot spots, Chrome books and iPads to implement remote learning for students faculty; personal protection equipment like masks and products like sanitation and cleaning supplies; air filters; contactless fixtures in restrooms; construction of plexi-glass dividers and sinks; and pay for additional employees and staff.

Gormley reported their will be insurance increases for the new school year.

Gaddis explained the budget formula in effort to the explained the newly mandated revenue neutral rate.

The five Board members present unanimously voted hold a hearing to increase the suggested RNR that will allow more accurate calculation of the budget. The hearing is scheduled for 6 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 1 in the Board room at the central office.

The 2021-2022 Budget Hearing is scheduled for 6:15 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 1 after the RNR hearing in the Board room.

Board members also made a change to their next meeting date to avoid a conflict with Back to School Night on the school calendar. Board members will meet at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 17 at the Central Office.

Before adjournment for the night, board members recessed from public session to discuss a matter on non-elected personnel for 12 minutes. After the public session resumed they unanimously voted to issue a 186-day contract for $39,500 for Katie Madden for school nurse duties.

Board Member Kelli Bottorff was present via virtual platform; Board members Nancy Keith and Greg Smith were absent.

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