Budget Update #6

Budget Update #6 – RSU #38 School Board Budget Meeting, March 23, 2016

To view the video of the budget workshop, as well as all supporting materials, please go to http://www.maranacook.org/budget

“Promoting student success for all while maintaining fiscal responsibility”

As the RSU #38 School Board nears the end of the budget development process, we wait for the remaining puzzle piece, the increase in health insurance costs. While the major roof repairs that have to be completed in FY17 at Readfield Elementary and Manchester Elementary comprise a major part of the 3.2% budget increase (as it stands now), and our subsidy was reduced $292,404 from FY16, we are appreciative of some savings: the elementary population at Readfield has decreased and we need to add a position at Manchester, we will not fill the Readfield position but will shift the position to Manchester which means not having to add an additional elementary position, our fuel contracts were reduced $75,190, we experienced a scheduled reduction of $62,200 in debt service interest, our bond bank renegotiated interest savings has been reduced by $72,825, and because our food service program is being managed so well we were able to reduce the local dollar support by $20,000. In addition to these savings, new programs and positions for FY17 are minimal in an effort to keep the budget increase as small as possible. We are hoping that we will experience a minimal, or at best no increase in our health insurance costs. We received word that notification of our rates should come by April 1.

An updated 2016-17 Budget Progression was distributed that shows a history of our FY17 budget development to date. This shows a total reduction (to date) of $486,499 over the initial FY17 budget proposal. The budget has dropped from a 6.25% increase in the Original Request Budget to a 3.2% increase (to date).

A major topic of discussion at the March 23rd RSU #38 School Board meeting was participation fees. The Board discussed two letters that were received concerning the possibility of eliminating activity fees, which would have resulted in having to increase the local dollars on the revenue side of the budget by approximately $45,000 to make up the anticipated revenue, or at the very least offering free participation for students who qualify for free and reduced lunch. No action was taken after this discussion.

The next RSU #38 School Board meeting is scheduled for April 6. Hopefully the Board will be able to discuss the impact of our health insurance rates on the FY17 budget proposal and any changes that need to be made as a result of that rate. I would urge citizens to come and participate in this meeting.

Sincerely,

Donna H. Wolfrom, Ed.D. Superintendent of School