Moderate School Budget Approved The Wallingford-swarthmore District Will See The Lowest Property Tax Increase In 11 Years.

Posted: May 25, 1994

WALLINGFORD — The Wallingford-Swarthmore school board approved a final budget Monday night that calls for the district's smallest property tax increase in 11 years.

The budget will raise taxes 2.896 percent for Nether Providence and Rose Valley residents and 2.82 percent for residents of Rutledge and Swarthmore.

For homes assessed at the district average of $5,000, the tax bill will increase by $76.15 - to $2,705.85 - for residents of Nether Providence and Rose Valley, and by $75.60, to $2,756.70, for Rutledge and Swarthmore.

For residents of Nether Providence and Rose Valley, the tax rate will be

541.17 mills, up 15.23 mills; for Rutledge and Swarthmore residents, 551.34

mills, up 15.12 mills.

The $27.6 million budget, a 7.8 percent increase from $25.6 million for the 1993-94 school year, will allot $10.2 million for teacher salaries, a 9.68 percent increase from the $9.3 million approved for the current school year.

Although the board has touted the budget increases as minimal, one resident said that any increase might be too much for people living on fixed incomes.

"I've been retired for 13 years, and I haven't had a raise in my pension," said John Maguire, 73, of Wallingford. "When your income is at a certain point and not rising, it makes it harder and harder each year to pay these increases."

In other district news, the board selected R.A. Montgomery Builders, a Wallingford contractor, to refurbish Swarthmore-Rutledge Elementary School. The $164,700 renovation project will include new ceilings, paint, lighting and carpeting for eight classrooms.

The board also chose Foreman Bashford Architects/Engineers Inc. of Manheim, Pa., to conduct a $10,000 study to evaluate what improvements may be needed for the district's aging buildings.

"The (Strath Haven) high school hasn't had any renovations since 1970, when it was built," said Superintendent George H. Slick, who added that a portion of the decorative facing of the roof was rotting, posing a fire hazard. Slick said he hoped the study could be completed in a year.

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