The District financial operations, including the day-to-day operations as well as budget preparation and management, are administered through the Business Office. The Business Office also supports the financial oversight for the Ephrata Area School Employees Benefit Trust.
The Budget process timeline for the each fiscal period (July 1 to June 30) is legislated by Act 1 of 2006. For more information on Act 1 legislation, please visit the PDE website, http://www.portal.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt/community/property_tax_relief/7452.
Act 1 legislation provides an Act 1 Index which is used to determine the maximum tax increases for each tax the school district levies. Districts are prohibited from increasing their tax millage rate by more than the Index unless the Department of Education has approved exceptions submitted by the district, or voters have approved the increase by referendum.
The District Act 1 Index for 2021-2022 – 2.75%
The District Act 1 index for 2020-2021 – 0.0%
The District Act 1 Index for 2019-2020 – 2.8%
Act 1 Provisions include a mandate that school boards adopt a Preliminary Budget Proposal at least 90 days before the Primary Election scheduled in May or adopt an opt-out resolution. In December, the District Board of Education will consider an Accelerated Budget Opt-Out Resolution certifying a tax rate within the inflation index that required millage not to increase above the Act 1 Index.
On June 14, 2021 the District Board of Education adopted the 2021-2022 Final Budget with a 2.75% tax increase. The millage rate is 17.72 mils. The Final Budget is available for public inspection at the District Administrative Office, 803 Oak Boulevard, Ephrata, PA.
At the end of each fiscal year, the financial records and operations of the year just completed are audited by an independent auditing firm. The auditors provide opinion regarding the District conformity with generally accepted accounting principles and assurance about whether financial statements are free from misstatement.