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Kaneland Connection: Board backs plan for Kaneland's tentative budget

Published: Wednesday, June 26, 2013 5:30 a.m. CDT • Updated: Thursday, June 27, 2013 11:16 p.m. CDT

SUGAR GROVE – The Kaneland School District 302 board approved the district’s tentative budget Monday night, but officials stress that the final budget won’t be presented until September.

The board approved a $50.8 million operating budget, with a total budget of $63.3 million. In September 2012, the board adopted a $49 million operating budget, with a total budget of $60 million.

The four board members present – Veronica Bruhl, Gale Pavlak, Pedro Rivas and Tony Valente – voted to approve the budget. Board members Cheryl Krauspe, Joe Oberweis and Teresa Witt were not in attendance. The only others in attendance at Kaneland Harter Middle School were Jeff Schuler, the district’s superintendent, and Julie Ann Fuchs, the district’s assistant superintendent for business.

Fuchs presented the budget and handed out highlights of the presentation. She said the full binder with details soon will be available at the district’s office at 47W326 Keslinger Road, Maple Park.

Bruhl, who is only a few months into her term as a school board member, asked Fuchs for the key changes in the budget from a year ago. Fuchs said there were five new school buses, instructional coaches and new technology.

In the presentation, Fuchs said that since the state has yet to pass its budget, “the district does not yet know what revenues will be made available for general state aid or mandated categorical grants.” That, she said, is why the final budget won’t be available until the Sept. 9 meeting. 

Valente voted against last year’s budget, saying he was concerned about the additional cost to taxpayers, but he was on board with the budget presented Monday. He did urge officials to “be conscious” of making sure the cost to residents doesn’t increase greatly.

Among the highlights:

• All salaries are projected to increase an average of 2.8 percent.

• Operating expenditures are expected to be $50,806,855, $2.4 million more than was budgeted last year.

• All operating funds have a slight surplus.

Kaneland and social media

Among other topics Monday, the board heard more from Schuler on plans regarding the district’s social media plans. Schuler stressed that the district’s website – www.kaneland.org – would remain the “main repository of information” and that the social media presence would invite people to visit the website.

Board members were provided charts showing how the information would be sent out. For instance, items posted on Facebook and Twitter would provide information about meetings, events and calendar updates and share links to stories posted on other district media. A presence on Pinterest could act as “a virtual bulletin board of all things happening in the Kaneland community.” And a blogger would blog feature stories highlighting school, student or staff achievements.

Schuler said he was advised that the cost of launching social media initiatives would be $10,000 to $12,000.

Corn Boil medallion found

The winner of the sixth annual Corn Boil medallion hunt has been announced. According to a news release, Shirlee Guddendorf is the winner of the hunt. She said the second clue and the word “lace” in the clue helped her find the location, according to the release.

Finding the medallion will earn Guddendorf recognition in the opening ceremonies for the festival, which will take place July 26 in Sugar Grove. She also receives $50.

The Corn Boil will take place July 26 to 28 in the area near Volunteer Park at 61 Main St., Sugar Grove.

The Corn Boil includes a carnival, a 5K run, a kids zone area and live music. For information, visit www.sugargrovecornboil.org.

• Al Lagattolla is the news editor of the Kane County Chronicle

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