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Harrisburg School District recovery plan calls for tax hike, pay cut

Written by Craig Layne, Morning Edition Host/Reporter | Apr 26, 2013 12:48 PM

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Photo by Scott LaMar/witf

(Harrisburg) -- The man charged with steering Harrisburg's school district out of financial trouble has laid out a path for improvement.

Chief Recovery Officer Gene Veno's proposal calls for a 3.5 percent tax increase instead of a 9.7 percent hike that was perviously suggested.

It also calls for 5 percent worker wage cuts in each of the next two years.

Veno says the district should realign its buildings to create a pre-kindergarten and kindergarten center, three elementary schools and three middle schools.

The John Harris and SciTech high school campuses would remain the same.

He says the district should consider selling its shuttered schools.

The appointed recovery officer also calls for applying for $6.4M in interest-free state loans, which would be available if the school board adopts the plan at its May 20 meeting.

The city's schools are struggling with some $437 million dollars in debt, and Veno predicts the plan will put the district's cash flow back in the black in the 2016-2017 school year.

Published in Harrisburg, News

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