RSU 73 board sends $18.34 million budget to voters

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JAY— Regional School Unit 73 directors voted unanimously Wednesday to approve a proposed $18.34 million budget for 2011-12 for the new consolidated school system.

The spending plan reflects a $125,521 increase over the combined budgets of Jay and RSU 36 school systems.

About $54,000 of the increase is due to directors adding in one year of a two-year lease/purchase agreement for laptops for sixth-graders. It was initially proposed as a three-year agreement outside of the budget.

The budget now moves to voters of Jay, Livermore and Livermore Falls in a hearing and vote at 6 p.m. Monday, June 6, at the Livermore Falls High School cafeteria. The open articles will allow voters to accept what the board recommends or increase or decrease the amount in each category.

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Voters will have a chance to validate whatever the amount set on June 6 during a referendum in each town Tuesday, June 14.

Directors voted 5-6 not to eliminate a dean of students at Livermore Falls High School. Opposed to the elimination were Tim Madden, Diane Gould and Cindy Young of Livermore, Mike Morrell of Jay, and Ann Souther and Jackie Knight of Livermore Falls. Dan DiPompo and Darcie Comstock of Jay were unable to make the meeting.

The action followed discussion on having the dean, which is similar to a assistant principal, in place due to the school having about 100 more students, and not needing the position.

The board did unanimously eliminate an administrative support assistant at that school.

Directors also voted 10-1, with Jackie Knight of Livermore Falls opposed, to eliminate 10 educational technician III positions at Livermore and Livermore Falls schools. The board voted unanimously to create 10 educational II technicians.

It means the current ed tech IIIs whose positions were eliminated would work in ed tech II positions, which currently means a $2-an-hour pay cut. The contracts are going to be negotiated prior to July 1 to make them more compatible with the Jay ed techs.

Directors also voted 1-10 not to eliminate a Jay technology integrator. Chairwoman Denise Rodzen of Livermore Falls was in favor of the elimination, she said, because she “strongly believed” that every teacher needs to integrate technology into the classroom. She said she also believed that RSU 73 technology team would work out a plan to get teachers more training and have current teachers who excel in technology teach teachers.

The board also voted 10-1, with Young opposed, to create separate articles for the warrant for four reserve accounts: $25,000 for health insurance; $25,000 for energy, fuel and electricity; $75,000 for capital improvements; and $65,000 for special education. The board also voted to have an article for transition retrofits for $8,250.

dperry@sunjournal.com

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