New Hampshire Underground

Regional Discussion => Monadnock => Keene => Topic started by: David on September 07, 2008, 01:16 AM NHFT

Title: Keene schools has nearly $2 mil. surplus
Post by: David on September 07, 2008, 01:16 AM NHFT
They were operating on a 'default' budget after their choice of budget of $2mil. more was voted down.  Wonder why they wanted/needed all of the extra money?
http://www.keenesentinel.com/articles/2008/09/06/news/local/free/id_322087.txt

Keene schools $2M in black
Surplus due to tuitions, savings in health costs
By Sarah Palermo
Sentinel Staff
Published:
Saturday, September 6, 2008 9:07 PM EDT
Whatever happens through the budget-building process this fall, Keene taxpayers have a nearly $2 million coupon in their back pocket.

Thanks to unexpected revenue from student tuition, and lower than expected costs in other areas, the district has about $1,974,674 to put toward reducing property taxes next year.

District Business Administrator John R. Harper said tuition from students outside the district attending Keene schools brought in $1,521,137 more than the district expected when the 2007-08 budget was developed last fall.

Another $453,537 was saved from health insurance premiums and special-education costs that were not as high as expected, according to Harper.

The district budget for 2007-08 was $52,798,742, a default budget the district was forced to fall back on after voters rejected a $54.4 million budget proposal.

A surplus one year does not help officials make any predictions for the coming year, Harper said. “Every budget year is its own. Each has its own issues.”

The 2009-10 budget — to which this surplus will be applied as a way of lowering the portion collected from property taxes — will likely have to include funds for the second phase of repairs fire officials have mandated be performed on the Keene Middle School building.

A report from architect David Lauren of Banwell Architects in Lebanon, outlining the potential costs of the work to the the 95-year-old building on Washington Street, is due by the end of October, Harper said.

In past meetings, board members have estimated the second phase of work — which would include a design for a full sprinkler system, replacing all non-code-compliant ceiling tiles and wall finishes, among other projects — could cost as much as $4 million, though Harper called this a “cocktail-napkin estimate ... with no real teeth to it yet.”

If a bond article to either substantially renovate the building or construct a new school on Maple Avenue is approved by voters next spring, the mandated work might be reduced, and the cost lowered, officials have said.

Earlier this summer, Harper estimated the district might see as much as $1.5 million in surplus, despite operating under a default budget.

“It’s always good give a pretty conservative projection for surpluses and then ideally it will come out to be more than that,” Harper said.

The surplus from the 2006-07 budget was about $2,408,189 — possibly the largest the district has ever seen, Harper said.

“So this surplus is down $450,000 from last year, and it’s not the biggest, but it’s still a good-sized one,” he said.

The district will begin the budget process for the 2009-10 fiscal year on Monday, when principals and district officials will meet to go over wants and needs for the next school year.

The meeting is scheduled for 5 p.m. in the north conference room at Cheshire Medical Center/Dartmouth-Hitchcock Keene.

Sarah Palermo can be reached at 352-1234, extension 1436, or spalermo@keenesentinel.com
Title: Re: Keene schools has nearly $2 mil. surplus
Post by: KBCraig on September 07, 2008, 03:41 AM NHFT
They still haven't sold that admin building, have they?
Title: Re: Keene schools has nearly $2 mil. surplus
Post by: Russell Kanning on September 07, 2008, 06:14 AM NHFT
don't worry ... they will spend it soon
Title: Re: Keene schools has nearly $2 mil. surplus
Post by: FTL_Ian on September 07, 2008, 10:33 AM NHFT
They're going to reduce property taxes because of this?  Yeah, right!
Title: Re: Keene schools has nearly $2 mil. surplus
Post by: Puke on September 07, 2008, 11:29 AM NHFT
They will probably buy Herman Miller Aeron office chairs for all the teachers. ($900 a pop!)
Or some other retarded crap that won't help the kids in any way.  ::)
Title: Re: Keene schools has nearly $2 mil. surplus
Post by: Kat Kanning on September 07, 2008, 12:22 PM NHFT
Now I know how they afford multiple T1 lines.
Title: Re: Keene schools has nearly $2 mil. surplus
Post by: COG on September 07, 2008, 07:55 PM NHFT
Why are they meeting at Cheshire Medical Center? Are the auditoriums not big enough in any of the schools?

I wonder if any of the surplus will go to pay for that meeting room.
Title: Re: Keene schools has nearly $2 mil. surplus
Post by: John Edward Mercier on September 07, 2008, 08:42 PM NHFT
They're going to reduce property taxes because of this?  Yeah, right!

No. Its an 'offset'... meaning it will be applied to what they spend next year.
The way they speak about it is actually disingenuous, because had the surplus not existed...
Next years budget might not include some of the expenditures they will suggest.

And voters will more than likely appropriate $2 million more than they would have otherwise.

Title: Re: Keene schools has nearly $2 mil. surplus
Post by: David on September 08, 2008, 07:09 PM NHFT
They still haven't sold that admin building, have they?


to my knowledge no.