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Finance Board shifts $1 million from education budget effectively.

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TLDR:

  • The Finance Board moved $1 million from the education budget to address financial challenges and balance the budget.
  • Major drivers in the school budget include salary and benefits increases, supply costs, and property services.

In a nearly three-hour meeting, the Board of Finance debated and made cuts to the 2024-25 proposed education budget in Newtown. The Board made cuts totaling $554,383 and moved $455,000 in maintenance costs to the Capital Non-Recurring Fund. This resulted in a final education budget of $88,817,373, a 4.4% increase over the previous year. Despite concerns about a $10 million increase in the school budget over the past four years, some board members struggled to find additional places to make cuts. Superintendent Chris Melillo highlighted challenges such as rising benefits costs and contractual wage increases, as well as the need to address learning loss due to the pandemic. The overall budget of $137,651,879 includes a proposed tax increase from 26.24 to 27.24 mills. The budget will go to the Legislative Council for review before a referendum on April 23.

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