Hatboro-Horsham School Board Approves 2022-2023 Final Operating Budget:
The Hatboro-Horsham School Board approved the 2022-2023 School Year Final Budget at its June 20, 2022 School Board meeting, a spending plan that will continue to help the district provide high quality education programs at a reasonable cost to the community.
Like most years since the inception of Act 1, balancing the budget within the Act 1 index has been very challenging. The lingering effects of the COVID-19 pandemic have unsettled the labor market and supply chains, making hiring and projecting costs exceptionally difficult. These challenges exacerbate existing annual concerns with budget development, including contractual salary increases, rising costs to educate students with special needs, and state-mandated increases in retirement contributions and charter school tuition. With support from the School Board coupled with a commitment to prioritize needs, effectively reallocate existing resources, and a consistent effort from the Administration and staff to implement strategies that improve efficiency and reduce costs, the Final Budget enhances our educational programs, improves services to our students, parents and the community and provides resources necessary to maintain and improve our facilities.
Since the inception of Act 1 in 2007, the Board of School Directors has balanced the budget within the limits of the base Act 1 Index without seeking exceptions. Over the past 15 years, the average annual tax increase has been limited to 2.2%, which is below the average base index of 2.6%. This year, under the terms of Act 1, all school districts were required to keep their real estate tax increases at or below the state index of 3.4%. Through continued conservative fiscal management, Hatboro-Horsham was able to keep its proposed real estate tax increase at 2.94%.
The Final 2022-2023 spending plan totals $121,618,820 an increase of $6,630,415 (5.8%) from last year’s budget. To balance the Final Budget, the School Board agreed to raise the millage rate from 30.591 to 31.49, an increase of 2.94% percent. The School Board directed the Administration to continue to review the budget for opportunities for additional cost reductions and increases in revenue and fund transfers to be able to reach a millage rate increase below 3.0% upon the adoption of the Final 2022-23 Budget. The new millage rate will mean the average Hatboro taxpayer’s real estate bill will go up by about $31.39 while the average Horsham taxpayer’s real estate bill will go up by about $86.13. The increase for every $100,000 in assessed property value will be about $90.