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I feel strongly that consolidations should be voluntary.
Consider this a trial balloon to test whether the community supports the idea.
Though the district was on the state's financial watch list when he became superintendent four years ago, it's since received an Award of Merit from the Illinois State Board of Education.
The district's million budget is running a surplus. 2 is the people who pay for it."In neighboring Laraway enrollment has risen to 465 students at the district's two elementary schools, Superintendent Joe Salmieri said Wednesday.
Students pay no fees for field trips or extracurricular activities. No one in the community or the school district has suggested a merger with Union School, he said."Laraway School is the jewel of this community," Salmieri said.
The district provides free hot breakfasts and lunches to children."Just because we have the money doesn't mean we shouldn't be responsible to taxpayers," he said. "Citizens take a lot of pride in the school."Consolidation is one of several options and part of a broader concept state officials refer to as school reorganization. One hypothetical path is for the Union district to dissolve, but have Union School absorbed by the Laraway district and continue operating in the community.
One suggestion is to make consolidations easier by reducing the number of petition signatures needed to place a referendum before voters asked to consider a merger.
Arcapita has entered into an agreement with Dalkia to build a GCC portfolio of utilities projects, principally district cooling and related utilities, with a country focus on Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait and Qatar.For example, homeowners in the two districts pay different tax rates, and a uniform rate would need to apply."There are different collective bargaining agreements with teachers. "The state addresses some of these complications and obstacles in a new report, "Delivering Efficient, Effective, and Streamlined Government To Illinois Taxpayers." The report was submitted Dec. Bruce Rauner by the 28-member Task Force on Local Government Consolidation and Unfunded Mandates."Our recommendations are designed to empower Illinois citizens and to allow local officials to lead by tackling consolidation, shared services and unfunded mandates on a case by case basis dependent on the needs of each community," task force chair Lt. The task force concluded the excessive number of government units contributes to Illinois having the second-highest property tax rates in the nation, barely less than New Jersey.I give Rauner credit for identifying the potential for cost savings and other benefits in reducing the number of units of government.I suggest it's time to pursue a consolidation of Union School District 81 and Laraway Community Consolidated School District 70C.The neighboring districts serve an area west of New Lenox and south of Joliet.