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Budget plan would raise spending by less than 4%

Maryvale School District residents will vote on a proposed budget that reflects a spending increase of less than 4 percent, according to school officials.

The current budget slightly exceeds $30 million dollars.

But voters won't know the impact of a $25 million capital project until this summer.

At Monday's board meeting, School Superintendent Gary Brader said he expects to have a final budget proposal ready for board review and adoption by next Monday.

But Brader said details of a long-planned construction project won't be available until the middle of May -- possibly after the May 16 budget vote.

Based on a recently completed survey of district facilities, the board this week directed architects to work up figures for renovations at all school buildings, including a new pool and science wing for the high school.

Two other construction plans, for energy performance upgrades and noise abatement, also are under consideration for the construction package, which residents would have to approve.

"We're thinking it could be in the $20 million to $25 million range but have not yet made any final decisions," Brader said.

Brader said the board expects to receive cost projections for the project by about mid-May.

He said officials hope to make decisions about the size of the overall project by the end of June and present the plan for voter approval next fall.

The impact on the tax rate remains unknown.

Officials said the capital project would qualify for state aid reimbursement.

The energy performance work is also expected to save money in coming years.

Noise-abatement projects might be eligible for federal and local funding.

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