Oley School Board refunds taxes to pike township

The Oley School Board voted unanimously at their Feb. 13 meeting to refund $2,638 in school taxes paid for a property along Mill Road in Pike Township.

The property was purchased by the township in November 2011 for use as a park. The Berks County Assessment Board identified the property as tax exempt for 2013 and thereafter.

In other business, the board approved distribution of materials related to an independent student trip to Germany in the summer of 2014.

Board Solicitor John M. Stott told the board the distribution of materials was acceptable from third-party groups as per the school’s distribution policy.

Dr. Tracy S. Shank, school superintendent, told the board that the she wanted to make it public that this was not a school-sponsored event. “People assume that just because a teacher is running it that it is a school event,” she said. “I want to make it very clear that it is not.”

Shank noted this is the first time an overseas trip was not being sponsored by the school district.

The board also accepted the resignation of Tracy L. Detwiler, director of business and support services, effective Feb. 1. Detwiler left to assume the position of business manager with the Antietam School District.

The board also ratified the tax collector compensation of $1.65 for each real estate tax bill issued and $1.65 per capital tax bill collected effective July 1, 2014. According to budget and finance committee chairperson Ralph C. Richards, the rate remains unchanged from 2013.

It was reported to the board that the district received a sum of $11,027.54 as a settlement and release payment for a lawsuit involving Wachovia Bank. Stott said the class-action lawsuit was brought by the attorney general and numerous school districts throughout the country.

The board received enrollment projections for the next decade showing a decrease in overall school enrollment. Additional enrollment projection information can be obtained by contacting the district.

Richards reported to the board that the Jan. 28 union negotiation session was canceled due to inclement weather.