ARDEN—Members of the Western Wayne School District Board of Education passed the finalized budget for the 2019-2020 school year with minor changes to the budget total.

The tentative budget was approved in May at a total of $56,550,779 for both revenue and expenditures. The final budget was approved 8-0 Monday, June 10, at $56,548,963.

Director Ethan Wood was not present at the June meeting and could not partake in the final approval vote.

In a later interview, Board Secretary Rose Emmett explained the difference in totals was due to minor adjustments in revenues and expenditures and does not have any significant effect on planned district operations.

Along with the final budget, final real estate tax was also finalized at 17.0804 mills, an increase of 1.01 percent over this year's tax.

Helping alleviate taxpayer burden, Western Wayne was approved to receive $876,890 from the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) in gaming funds.

According to Western Wayne's 2019 Homestead and Farmstead Exclusion Resolution, passed along with the budget and tax resolutions last Monday, there are a total of 4,132 approved homesteads and farmsteads in the district.

According to the resolution, each of the approved homesteads and farmsteads will receive up to $213.06 in real estate tax reduction.

As reflected on tax notices, this represents a maximum real estate assessed value reduction of $12,474 for each homestead or farmstead.

Residents of approved homesteads or farmsteads will receive a reduction equal to either the County-established assessed value of the homestead or the maximum approved value reduction of $12,474, whichever is lower.

The resolution states, “For purposes of this Resolution, 'approved homestead' and 'approved farmstead' shall mean homesteads and farmsteads listed in ...[a county-certified report under Act 50, 54 Pa. C.S. §8584 (i), and Act1, 53 P.S. §6926.34l (g) (3)]... and received by the School District from the County Assessment Office on or before May 1 pursuant to Act 1, 53P.S. § 6926.34l (g) (3), based on homestead/farmstead applications filed with the County Assessment Office on or before March 1.”

More information about the 2019 Homestead and Farmstead Exclusion Resolution is available from the district office 1-800-321-9973 option 5.

Other business

At last Monday's meeting, the Board agreed to pay up to $17,112.20 to South Canaan Township for the paving of a stretch of Hemlock Road up to the second entrance at Western Wayne Middle School.

In a separate matter, the district approved agreements with Northeastern Educational Intermediate Unit (NEIU) #18 and NEIU #19 for special education services.

The agreement with NEIU #18 is estimated to be $23,855 and the agreement with NEIU #19 is estimated to equal $214,642.