“JCCC approves budget, lowers tax levy”

The following article appeared in the Johnson County Sun.

“JCCC approves budget, lowers tax levy”
Elaine Bessier
Johnson County Sun

Johnson Countians will experience a 5.6 percent decrease in the mill levy for Johnson County Community College as a result of the Board of Trustees’ unanimous approval Aug. 10 of a $152 million budget for 2005-06.

The levy is at a three-year low. The budget also reflects a decrease in the student cost per credit hour for spring semester.

“I’m pleased we can fund a growing college and reduce the mill levy,” said Lynn Mitchelson, finance committee chairman. “I think it’s wonderful that we can lower the burden for the college we think will be named the number one community college.” The college is in the process of applying for the Baldridge Award.

No citizens spoke during the public hearing preceding approval of the budget. The spending plan calls for a decrease of .478 mills in the levy assessed taxpayers, reducing it to 8.96 mills from the 2004-05 total of 9.438.

The levy dip will cut taxes for the average Johnson County house, valued at $220,025, to about $227 a year.

The college cut the mill levy and reduced tuition by lowering from 4 to 3 percent the amount budgeted to cover tax delinquency rates. The college also anticipates an increase of 7.5 percent in state aid in 2005-06 compared to the previous fiscal year. Assessed valuation in the county is expected to increase by 5.4 percent.

The budget reflects a 4.1 percent increase in salary and benefits, and provides six new full time teaching positions. The jobs are needed to accommodate growth in mathematics, science, business administration, anthropology, psychology and at the Academic Achievement Center. Other new positions are in admissions and information services.

Capital expenses include increased funding for computers and additional debt. Funds are also provided for three major facilities projects: Regnier Center for Technology and Business, Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art and remodeling of the Arts and Technology Building for Auto Technology.