Broward Schools & Property Tax Edition: Capitol to Courthouse Headliners–August 5

Aug 5, 2009

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Broward School Board votes to rehire teachers

More than 100 Broward educators who lost their jobs in June were officially rehired into different teaching positions Tuesday at a Broward School Board meeting.


Diminished Broward School budget passes 1st test

With little discussion and much resignation, Broward School Board members signed off Thursday night on the first draft of the district’s much diminished budget.


Miami-Dade schools chief’s budget plan finds consensus

The Miami-Dade School Board on Tuesday unanimously approved the first draft of the school system’s $4.8 billion budget — a plan that would prevent layoffs and bolster the district’s rainy-day fund.


Editorial:  Why the rush on Miami-Dade schools contracts?

The Miami-Dade School Board has two important contracts to consider Wednesday, but the way the process has been handled in one case and the laser-speed in the other raise questions.


Schools coping with Legislature’s ‘optional’ tax hike

Just a year or two ago, raising property taxes would have been considered political suicide for a school-board member in Florida.


Florida property values not as low as was predicted

Economists said state property values are higher than expected, but tough times are ahead.


Unpaid property taxes hit localities

The number of Americans not paying their property taxes amid the recession and the brutal housing collapse has increased sharply more than doubling in some parts of the country.


School district audit finds billing errors

The showdown over a controversial audit saying the Broward school district overpaid more than $765,000 in classroom repairs after Hurricane Wilma came down to accountants poring over 3-year-old invoices for several hours Thursday.


Contract lets school officials get around ‘double dipping’ law

During their 2009 session, state lawmakers passed legislation to curb what they saw as a dubious practice commonly dubbed “double dipping” in which elected officials and some public employees would retire and, after a one-month break, return to their jobs to earn a salary and pension simultaneously.


Editorial: The DROP dodge

School Board members Wes Eubank and Eileen Roy are almost always at odds. But they agree on at least one thing. We just wonder why the rest of the board doesn’t get it. Eubank and Roy don’t like the board’s practice of using a private company as a vehicle to enable many of the district’s senior managers and school principals to retire and collect substantial payouts and lavish benefits; all the while continuing to remain on the job and earn top salaries.


Blog:  Lower property values mean higher local tax rates for Florida school districts

Last year, Florida school districts collected taxes on $1.8 trillion in property. This year, the DOE has certified a tax roll statewide of $1.6 trillion.


Economists: Fla. Property Values Will Drop

Property values will keep dropping for another year but at a slightly slower pace than previously forecast before beginning to rebound in 2011, state economists said.


Palm Beach County Commission moves ahead with proposed property tax increase

Despite growing concerns from business leaders and residents, Palm Beach County commissioners Tuesday agreed to move forward with increasing property tax rates as much as 15 percent.


Recession Leading To Larger Classes

Like a seesaw on the school playground, falling state budgets are pushing class sizes higher.


Lower tax: Hernando County school tax will decrease this year

The school tax rate will decrease in Hernando County this year even if the School Board uses its new power to tack on an additional quarter mill.


Hefty health insurance request shocks Hernando County school officials

As President Barack Obama prepared to take to the airwaves to defend his health care overhaul last week, Hernando school officials got a little insurance sticker shock of their own.


Seminole school board approves property tax increase

Over objections from some property owners, the Seminole County School Board on Tuesday approved a tax increase that officials said is needed to help the district through a tight budget year.


Collier School Board votes to raise tax rate

Falling revenues are not translating into higher property taxes in the Collier County School District.


Lee School Board approves higher tax rate

Falling revenues are making way for higher taxes in the Lee County School District.


Clay School Board approves property tax rate hike

The Clay County School Board unanimously approved a temporary critical needs property tax levy for 2009-10, which was authorized by the Legislature this year.


Okaloosa school board tentatively increases millage

A tentative $380 million budget for the upcoming school year, which included millage rate increases, was approved Monday by the Okaloosa County School Board.


Federal funds continue to pay on-site school nurses

For at least one more year, the school district will be able to count on outside funding sources to keep on-site nurses in the schools. A federal Medicaid reimbursement program will continue to pay for school nurses in the elementary schools.


Pasco superintendent’s moves in rehiring retired staff called into question

When she needed a new principal for Centennial Elementary, Pasco superintendent Heather Fiorentino wanted a strong, known leader to keep the school moving forward.


Atwater: last ‘new’ school opens

The ribbon-cutting at on Tuesday will likely be the last for a new school for perhaps a decade.


Opinion: Hometown Democracy is a reaction not a better solution

With the Gaines Street groundbreaking last month, something unusual happened. Nope, it’s not that this project was finally moving. It was the group of citizens who rode up on their bikes and interrupted the show to protest a lack of separate bike lanes on the new two-lane Gaines Street.


Report says Florida is in high-school graduation crisis

It’s now a household phrase applied to banks and auto makers in a bailout era: too big to fail.


School supply spending to fall 8 percent to $549 survey says

Coupons and discounts will be the hottest styles for back-to-school shoppers this year.


Teachers pay to keep classrooms stocked

Teachers return with reduced reimbursement for supplies. Cocoa High English teacher Heather Deel shells out more than $500 of her own money to buy paper, books, computer flash drives and even elastic bandages to keep her classroom well-stocked — and lessen the burden on parents.


Oliphant fired by Broward School Board

Former Broward elections supervisor Miriam Oliphant and 122 other teachers and counselors lost their jobs for failing to either renew or attain their teaching certifications.


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