MEXICO – Residents of the 12 towns that send students to the Region 9 School of Applied Technology will have a chance to decide on secondary and adult education budgets for 2009-10 Tuesday night.

Adopted by the cooperative board is a secondary vocational budget of $2 million, up from the 2008-09 operating budget of $1.9 million.

Although the proposed budget is 5 percent higher than the current year’s, director Brenda Gammon said the actual rise will be about $30,000 because $80,000 in carryover will be applied.

The adult and community education adopted budget is just under $297,000, which is $1,700 more than the current year.

Gammon said the hike in the secondary budget is attributed to providing across-the-board salary hikes of 3 percent rather than giving step raises to employees, which in effect provided smaller salary hikes than if instructors received step increase, a doubling of electric costs, and the start of a new semester-long program that will introduce sophomores to the school’s various offerings.

Although the final figures have not yet been announced, Gammon said towns in SAD 44 and SAD 43 are expected to pay slightly less than the current year, while those in SAD 21 will likely pay a bit more.

The vote takes place at 6:30 p.m. in the cafeteria of the school.

After the budget vote, the board’s regular monthly meeting begins. Among the agenda items is possible adoption of a new cooperative agreement. Gammon said the funding formula will likely remain the same, while the number and representation of people on the cooperative board may change because of the creation of the new Western Foothills School District.

The new district eliminates the separate SADs of 21 and 43, while SAD 44 remains the same.

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