Next New London school budget to get another look

New London - The school board's finance committee is scheduled to meet Wednesday to continue a discussion of the board's proposed 2012-13 budget.

Members of the committee and school administrators met last Wednesday to review a handful of cost-saving proposals that will retain the current $39.8 million budget, which has not been increased in three years.

The board is facing a nearly $4 million increase in contractual transportation costs; tuition increases; utility costs and three new positions for the Winthrop Magnet Elementary School.

Superintendent of Schools Nicholas A. Fischer said Friday that the district will receive about $800,000 in Education Cost Sharing money through Gov. Dannel P. Malloy's plan to increase funding to municipalities.

"It doesn't get to the bottom of the problem. The remaining really keeps us pretty flat. We've still got pretty substantial needs that we're not able to address," he said.

Other projected increases include a 3 percent nursing contract increase, a 10 percent increase to the district's health insurance accounts and insurance costs.

To help the board make more specific decisions, each school administrator was required to submit an impact plan that outlined what a 10 percent decrease in funding would mean for their school. However, Fischer has also asked each school administrator what the picture would look like if the cut were reduced to 3 or 6 percent.

Also on the table is the option to move Nathan Hale Students into Harbor School. A public hearing on the issue will be held at 5:30 p.m. Thursday.

School board Chairman William Morse has said that closing the modular classrooms over the summer would save the district about $39,000 a month.

A public hearing on the budget is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. on March 8 and the board is expected to submit its budget to the city by March 15.

If you go

Who: Board of Education

What: Finance Committee

When: 7 p.m. Wednesday

Where: Science and Technology Magnet School, 490 Jefferson Ave., New London.

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