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NEWS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS

 

HCC Trustees Approve Tax Levies and New Programs
11/17/2010

FREEPORT Each year Highland Community College is required to submit a tax levy request. Setting the tax levy is a somewhat complex task determined by property tax predictions, voter-approved tax rates and legislature-regulated categories of revenue and budget estimates. The levies approved at Tuesdays Board of Trustees meeting included an education and building fund levy, insurance levy, audit levy, and a Social Security and Medicare levy. The taxes collected each year are a result of Highland's tax rate multiplied by the District's equalized assessed valuation (EAV).

Highland's 2010 proposed tax year levy is a total of 104.7% of the 2009 tax year extension. The calculation of this increase is a comparison of the taxes collected via the 2009 tax levy to the proposed taxes levied for the 2010 tax year. The Colleges overall property tax rate of 47.9 cents per 100 assessed valuation is expected to remain the same this year based on current equalized assessed valuation estimates.

Trustees also approved a resolution authorizing the issuance of general obligation bonds in the amount of $1.75 million in order to fund needed technology and infrastructure upgrades. The College will levy the money in the bond and interest fund.

Highland officials have pointed out that the College is planning carefully to ensure that the tax rate remains unchanged. We have an opportunity to decrease the tax rate in our special funds such as the protection, health, and safety fund because we have completed a number of safety and energy efficiency-related projects. That decrease, along with a tapering off of existing bonds, will allow us to make the needed technology and infrastructure purchases without increasing the overall tax rate, said Vice President of Administrative Services Jill Janssen.

As announced previously, funds raised from the sale of the bonds will be used to finance a variety of projects such as maintaining the Colleges computer replacement plan within classrooms and computer labs; replacing the aging greenhouse with one that is ADA accessible and more suited to instruction; implementing a software system to enhance student support services; creating a centralized testing center; and employing elements of the Colleges disaster recovery plan.

In the area of academic programming, Trustees approved a new Paramedic certificate and Professional Tax Preparer certificate. The Paramedic certificate will provide an opportunity for emergency medical technicians to obtain credentials if they choose not to pursue an associate of applied science in Emergency Medical Services. The Professional Tax Preparer certificate was developed to assist tax preparers in getting ready to pass the new Internal Revenue Service tax competency test required for those who are not attorneys, certified public accountants, or enrolled agents. Both the Paramedic certificate and Professional Tax Preparer certificate will be submitted to the Illinois Community College Board for approval.

In other business, Trustees approved

the ratification of a 3-year contract with the Highland Community College Faculty Senate Local 1957 that includes an increase on the base salary of 1.5% for FY'11, 2.0% for FY'12, and 2.5% for FY'13 and no change in the percentage faculty members pay for health insurance coverage. The previous one-year contract had no increase to the base salary.

the appointment of Ms. Sandra Dunmore as full-time Financial Aid Specialist II

the appointment of Ms. Jocelynn Boggess-Lenoir as full-time Cafeteria Manager

the list of part-time and overload instructors to teach during the Fall 2010 semester

use of the shared Agency Fund (a fund that both the YMCA and Highland contribute money to) in order to cover the expense of purchasing and installing two automatic door closers at the Child Care/Training Center at a total cost of $648



_________________________
OFFICE OF COMMUNITY RELATIONS
2998 W. Pearl City Road
Freeport, IL 61032-9341

815-235-6121
Fax 815-235-6130



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