UP School Board approves millages, votes to table transportation issue

  • Fine

The Union Parish School Board met last week for its regular session and passed several resolutions of importance.

The board adopted a resolution to approve the following 2021 millage rates: School District Regular (SP) is 3.55 mills, School District 1 Consolidated (SP) is 15 mills and School District 1 Consolidated (Bonds) is 19 mills. A millage is a tax rate levied on real estate or other property. According to Union Parish Tax Assessor Lance Futch, one mill is currently valued at 1/1000 of market value of property owned. The 3.55 millage is a constitutional tax which will not change. The 15 mill tax was a special tax passed by voters which is scheduled to terminate at the end of December F 2021. It would have to be renewed in order to continue. The 19 mill tax was a special tax adopted to repay bonds. It is scheduled to end in 2036. All three of these millages are assessed to every taxpayer in Union Parish and the funds generated go into the Union Parish School Board general fund. Superintendent of Union Parish Schools, Kristy Auger-Fine, explained the 19 mill bond tax. “The Union Parish School board had to ne set the millage rate for 2021 in an effort to make payment of the general obligation debt. This debt is on the 20-year bonds approved by the taxpayers of Union Parish to build a new Union Parish High School plant and to renovate Union Parish Elementary and Downsville Community Charter schools,” Fine said. “This tax will roll off the books in 2036. Nineteen mills was recommended to the board based on input I received from our bond attorney and governmental consultant. The Union Parish School District and I will ever be grateful to the taxpayers for giving us the opportunity to engage students in such beautiful state-of-theart facilities.”

The board gave approval for a resolution to enter into a contract and lease agreement with Union Growth and Development Foundation, Inc., which will allow them to lease the old Farmerville High School property and authorize the president of Union Parish School Board to execute the necessary documents.

The terms of the lease are for one year, at $100 per month. The lease became effective August 17, and will run through August 16, 2021.

The board also granted approval to accept low bids for the Child Nutrition Program for the 2020-2021 school year. These bids went to Robertson’s Produce Company, G & G Commercial Hood and Duct Company for Vent-ahood and fire services, Auto-Chlor System for cleaning and chemical products and Green Gator Pumping and Sewer LLC for grease trap services.

In additional business, the School District has suspended the public’s ability to rent or have access to School District facilities for private use during the COVID-19 pandemic. Rental and private access will resume once the COVID restrictions are lifted.

Tabled was a resolution to enter into a School Bus Transportation Contract for the 2020-2021 school year with D’Arbonne Woods Charter School. D’Ar bonne Woods will be having students attend school five days a week whereas, Union Parish schools will not. This created a discrepancy in projected costs. After recalculations, this will be discussed at the next monthly session.