Owen J Robert SD Loses $2 Million A Year Under Lowered Coventry Mall Tax Assessment

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Chester County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Chester County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

SOUTH COVENTRY TOWNSHIP, PA— The Owen J. Roberts School Board unanimously approved a real estate tax appeal settlement with Coventry Retail, LP, that lowers the assessed value of the Coventry Mall from $98 million in 2012 to $23.2 million in 2014.

The reassessment will equate to a loss of about $2 million a year in property tax revenues to the district.

In addition to the revenue loss, the agreement is retroactive to 2012, so the district will have to repay mall owners $1,619,799 of taxes paid in 2012, 2013 and 2014. In accordance with the agreement, $650,000 of that will be paid in cash within 60 days, according to attorney David L. Allebach Jr., who represented the board on this matter. The remaining funds will be credited to the mall against future taxes,

District officials had anticipated that cost and have reserved the full $1.6 million, according to district Chief Financial Officer Jaclin Krumrine. Therefore, the district has the $650,000 on hand to pay back the mall owner. The remaining nearly $1 million will help balance the 2014-15 budget to make up for the tax credit the mall will receive during that fiscal year.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/social-affairs/20140129/ojr-loses-2m-a-year-under-lowered-coventry-mall-tax-assessment

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September Hearing Is First Step In $38M Renovation At Owen J. Roberts

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Chester County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Chester County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

SOUTH COVENTRY TOWNSHIP, PA — The Owen J. Roberts School Board has unanimously set Sept. 26 as the date for the public hearing on its $19 million renovation and expansion plan for East Vincent Elementary School.

Business Administrator Jaclin Krumrine said the hearing, which is required by law and is the primary opportunity for the public to comment on the first phase of the proposal, will be held at 7 p.m. the school itself, which is located at 340 Ridge Road.

Following the hearing, the district hopes to put the full project out for bid in “late November, early December,” she said.

The renovations at East Vincent are part of a three phase project that will take several years and cost taxpayers about $38 million.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/article/20130829/NEWS01/130829428/september-hearing-is-first-step-in-38m-renovation-at-owen-j-roberts

Stalled Owen J Roberts Contract Talks Lead To Teacher Slowdown

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Chester County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Chester County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

SOUTH COVENTRY — The stalled contract negotiations between the Owen J. Roberts School District and its teachers union has gone public.

The teachers have been working without a contract since June 30 and the two sides have been negotiating, quietly for the most part, for 15 months.

However the failure to reach an agreement about wages has raised the stakes and the rhetoric in the matter and the teachers union have instructed their members to work only to the specific language of the expired contract and cease all extra and voluntary activities.

School Board President Douglas K. Hughes reacted by issuing a letter to the district Tuesday, which was also   posted on the district web site, announcing that the teachers union had decided to “work to contract,” explaining they would “work only to the contractually obligated hours” and informing residents and taxpayers the union had asked their members “not to participate in any unpaid activities.”

Read more:  http://www.pottsmerc.com/article/20130328/NEWS01/130329308/stalled-ojr-contract-talks-lead-to-teacher-slowdown#full_story

OJR School Enrollments Predicted Down Over Next 10 Years

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Chester County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Chester County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

SOUTH COVENTRY — Enrollments in the Owen J. Roberts School District are expected to remain flat or even decrease over the next ten years, according to new enrollment projections presented to the board at a recent committee of the whole meeting.

Projections show the overall student population rising slightly through 2016, from the current 5,121 students to 5,240. If the projections prove true, the numbers will begin dropping in 2017, when 5,233 students are expected to be registered, rising and falling in some years, but hitting 5,218 students in 2022.

Those predictions, presented by Director of Pupil Services Holly W. Acosta, are based on a new study by Decision Insite, an enrollment impact firm which looks at kindergarten enrollments, planned residential developments, and student cohorts through each grade level.

The numbers are a far cry from the steady growth the district had been experiencing in the past, with district wide enrollments climbing by over 1,000 students in 10 years, from 4,050 in 2002 to 5,121 in 2012.  That’s a reflection of the economy and the dip in the housing market which has put a number of large scale development projects on hold, according to Superintendent Michael Christian.

Read more:  http://www.pottsmerc.com/article/20130118/NEWS01/130119426/ojr-school-enrollments-predicted-down-over-next-10-years-#full_story