RANTOUL — The Rantoul City Schools 2019-2020 budget shows a surplus of almost $1.3 million.

Superintendent Michelle Ramage said much of the surplus is due to the late arrival of real estate tax payments that were due from Champaign County last year and arrived this year.

Anticipated revenues were set at $27,791,642 with projected expenses at $26,468,706.

The district plans to use the 1 percent sales tax money to pay off the bonds that have allowed the district to finish construction projects in the past. The sales tax brings in $1.3 million per year.

Taco Bell property, BRG and Villas of Hollybrook are appealing their taxes this year.

During the public forum, resident Jack Anderson disputed the state’s estimate of per-pupil cost for RCS students. Anderson said by his calculations the cost should be around $19,000.

According to the Illinois State Board of Education website, the current recorded per pupil cost for the district is $13,119.

RCS Facilities Supervisor  Shannon Clark showed the board what she and her staff did during the summer.

Broadmeadow Elementary had a repainted swing set and refinished gym floor. Eastlawn Elementary also had its gym floor refinished along with new landscaping in the front.

Northview Elementary also received new landscaping along with multiple paint jobs throughout the school.

Pleasant Acres Elementary received a new pre-kindergarten  playground, and J.W. Eater Junior High received landscaping and painting in the annex.

Rantoul Youth Program Director Andy Graham and Village Administrator Scott Eisenhauer gave a presentation about the proposed new sports complex that would be built on the community’s west side and its economic impact on the community.

Ramage updated the board on RCS enrollment.  

She said student numbers have climbed by 86 students from last year.

The board learned  Broadmeadow Elementary Principal Tom Magers has co-authored an article in the Illinois Reading Council Journal, “Getting to Know Our Students: The Heart of Differentiation in the Balanced Literacy Classroom,” highlighting RCS schools.

The Illinois Association of School Boards will host a dinner for board members Oct. 3 in Mattoon; all RCS schools will practice law enforcement drills Sept. 25, 27 and 30; a Bilingual Parent Advisory Council meeting will held from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Oct. 3 and 10 at Eastlawn Elementary; and parent-teacher conferences will be Oct. 10.

The next board meeting will be at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 17, in the Robert D. Little Board Room.