Trustees Set Tax Levy
The tax rate for the East Central College district will remain the same for the upcoming year. That approval by the ECC board of trustees came following the annual tax levy hearing held at the college Monday, August 31.
The property tax rate for 2015-16 was set at .4541 cents per $100 of assessed valuation. The tax levy is broken into two categories: an operating levy of .3700 cents and a debt service levy of .0841 cents. The operating levy is set at the maximum rate as approved by voters in 2006. Nine years ago when voters authorized a general obligation bond issue for construction of the health and science building, the college committed to maintaining the debt service levy at its then-current rate.
The operating levy is expected to produce more than $6.3 million in local revenue for the fiscal year that began July 1, 2015.
“The debt service levy adjusts each year according to the college’s schedule of principal and interest payments for existing general obligation bonds,” noted Phil Pena, ECC vice president of finance and administration. Pena stated that the debt service levy is expected to generate at least $1.5 million in revenue. However, that revenue can only be used for debt retirement.
The valuation of the taxable property within the junior college district for 2015 is more than $1.6 billion ($1,620,881,736), a decrease of more than $37 million from 2014. $1,287,211,914 is in real estate assessed valuation, and $333,669,822 in personal property.
No citizens appeared before the board to comment on the proposed tax rate. The levy hearing was held prior to the regular monthly meeting of the board.
The college’s taxing district takes in approximately 1,000 square miles and includes the major portion of Franklin County and smaller portions of Crawford, Gasconade, St. Charles, Warren and Washington Counties.
Trustees Approve Roofing Bid and Personnel
East Central College trustees accepted a roofing bid and approved a number of personnel matters at their August 31 meeting.
Money provided by capital improvement bonds from the State of Missouri will cover the cost of replacing the roof of the Training Center on the ECC campus in Union. Board members accepted the low bid of $184,886.64 from Bade Roofing in St. Louis to replace the roof put on when the building was constructed in 2000. Phil Pena, vice president of finance and administration at ECC, noted that the roof is beyond its life, primarily due to earlier foundation problems which caused movement and shifting of the roof materials and decking.
The specification and bid management was conducted by E & I Cooperative Services, a state sponsored and approved service authorized under the state purchasing program which provides the college discounts negotiated by the state. Pena noted that work will be done this fall and should not impact building usage or occupancy.
The project includes removing the existing ballast, TPO roofing and flashing, and non-used curbs and equipment. Roofing materials will be replaced and metal flashing and ballast will be reinstalled. Repairs will be made around mechanical equipment and the building will be brought up to current energy codes. The bid stipulated a 20 year warranty.
Bids were also received from three other companies and ranged from $185,801 to $231,584.
Members of the board approved several full-time appointments and resignations.
David Owens was hired as librarian. Since 2008 he has been employed at A.T. Still Memorial Library in Kirksville as public services manager. Owens attended Truman State University, earning a bachelor’s degree in exercise science. He completed a master’s degree in library and information science at San Jose State University in California.
The new student activities coordinator is Courtney Henrichsen. She received her bachelor’s degree in social work from the University of Missouri-St. Louis and is currently pursuing a master’s degree in social work at Saint Louis University. For the past two years she worked in residential life at UMSL.
Laura McDonald will serve as a new nursing instructor at ECC in Rolla. McDonald earned her associate degree in nursing from Lincoln University. She continued her studies at Central Methodist University, receiving a bachelor’s degree in nursing. McDonald is pursuing her master’s in nursing at CMU.
Since 2009 McDonald has worked as an RN at Mercy Ambulatory Surgery Center in Rolla. She has been an adjunct nursing instructor for ECC since 2013.
Rachel Howard was hired as retention coordinator, a temporary assignment through next June 30. She attended Missouri Baptist University where she completed bachelor’s degrees in psychology, early education and elementary education as well as a master’s degree in counselor education.
Howard has been an adjunct instructor at ECC and Missouri Baptist for several years. She worked for the Meramec Valley School District from 2002 to 2007, spending one year as a kindergarten teacher and four years as school counselor at Zitzman Elementary.
Trustees accepted the resignations of three employees: Casey Reid, director of developmental education; Elizabeth Long, nursing instructor; and Shirley Hofstetter, director of financial services.
Employment of 133 part-time instructors for the 2015 fall semester was also approved.