The athletics funding formula is set.
The Warren County School District's board of directors had three options to choose from at its meeting Monday night regarding how to distribute athletic funding for the 2012-2013 school year.
Option one was based on total enrollment with a flat amount for each student in each building, regardless of whether or not they participated in a sport. Warren and Youngsville, with a higher percentage of non-athletes, would benefit more in that scenario.
Option two was based on the number of students that have participated in a sport during the current school year. Eisenhower and Sheffield, with the highest percentage of participating students, benefit most.
Option three was a formula based on a combination of several factors, including the cost of the program and the number of participants in that program.
The board selected number 3.
But it wasn't that easy.
As soon as the floor was opened, board member Tom Knapp made a motion for formula number two, the formula that best funds Eisenhower and Sheffield. Nancy McDanel seconded.
Vice President Donna Zariczny then offered an amendment that funding be kept at current levels, essentially formula number one. Knapp and McDanel rejected it.
"I was of a mind that, perhaps, basing on program and participation is a middle type of allotment where there would be so much per each program per each team and sport to fund at a base level," board member Jack Werner said. "Then the participation level at the school would bolster (funding) or not."
"That's in essence, plan three," Jim Miller, the district's director of county-wide athletics, said.
"(Superintendent) Brandon (Hufnagel) suggested at our meeting that there were some funds in the central office budget that could be allocated to help provide additional funding," Werner said. "Has that been determined?"
Miller said that approximately $30,000 could be taken from post-season coaches' salaries and put back in the athletic budget. "It did increase each of the school's allotment," he said.
"I'm in favor of recognizing that there has to be a progmatic base cost...regardless of how many kids are in the school," board member John Grant said.
Werner then offered an additional amendment, also rejected, that would use formula three and distribute the $30,000 from the central office fund to the schools most directly affected by the formula change which, in formula three, are Warren and Youngsville.
"I'm troubled. It's such a polarizing topic," Board President Art Stewart said. "I'll vote against number two because I think there will be better options out there."
A vote was held on Knapp's original motion, seeking to implement formula number two. The measure was defeated 7-2 with Knapp and McDanel the sole yes votes.
Werner then made a motion to implement formula number three, stipulating that the discretionary funds from the central office account will go to the schools "most adversely affected."
The measure passed 8-1 with Knap voting in opposition.
According to documentation provided at a committee of the whole meeting held last month, Eisenhower will receive $136,865 in athletic funding next year, Sheffield $84,186, Warren $229,412 and Youngsville $98,500.
In a way to boost revenue, there was discussion about raising ticket prices at varsity events by $1 and instituting fees at middle school events of $2 for adults and $1 for students. All of the funds generated by the increase would go to the building principal who would be directed to use them at his discretion for equipment replacement.
But both faced resistance
Board member Mary Anne Paris said that the Sheffield Township Supervisors, who collect the fees at events in Sheffield, had not been notified of the increase and she said that they should be before the prices are raised. "Are we telling them what to charge?" Paris asked.
"We always do," Stewart said.
The measure was tabled until notification could be given to those affected.
On the middle school issue, Grant, who is chairman of the board's Finance Committee, expressed concern about the entire proposition.
"We're establishing a new flow of dollars without any protocol or rules," he said. "Who's collecting it? What account is it going into? How is it being distributed?"
McDanel made a motion that the implementation of middle school admission fees be tabled and moved to the Finance Committee for further discussion. The board agreed.