On the docket for next week’s Decatur School Board meeting (Action item “g”), “modify facility use fees effective April 1, 2010 by creating three categories of users.”
In short, the new, proposed categories are:
- Schools within the school district with the high school having the first priority of facility use. Schools – other than the high school – would be allowed one event per calendar year.
- Second category would be entities that directly support our students such as PTA/PTO, boosters, Decatur Recreation After School Program, Farm-2-School, and DEF. These entities would reimburse the district for custodial and technician overtime and FICA. City-wide activities and/or events that directly involve City Schools of Decatur students such as the Decatur Book Festival would fall into the above category.
- All other entities would be in the third category subject to the facility use fees as approved by the board at the January 2010 meeting. The facility use fees account for actual maintenance and operating expenditures from fiscal year 2009 (custodians, utilities, and maintenance overhead). These fees would enable the district to be fully reimbursed for its costs.
Sounds like many non-profits would still fall under category 3.
In terms of how DHS’ rates compare to other area facilities of like size, the agenda item has this to say…
Eleven (11) districts had a performing arts center comparable to City Schools of Decatur. Facility use fees ranged from $62 to $160 per hour. Four (4) school districts charged an additional fee to account for staffing such as custodians, technicans, and/or administrators ranging from $30 to $40 per hour. Five (5) districts stated that they negotiated fees or had a different fee structure for non-profits and student groups. Five (5) districts are considering restructuring facility use fees and working with their school attorneys since current fee structures do not fully cover costs including utilities.