MEXICO — The Region 9 School of Applied Technology board approved a proposed $2.1 million vocational budget and a $299,000 adult education budget Wednesday night.

The 2014-15 spending plan will go to voters at 6 p.m. Wednesday, May 7, in the cafeteria of the River Road school. Region 9 towns are Andover, Bethel, Greenwood, Newry, Woodstock, Hanover, Rumford, Mexico, Byron, Roxbury, Dixfield, Canton, Carthage and Peru. 

Vocational director Brenda Gammon said although the amount is about $18,000 more than this year, member towns will pay a total of $3,500 less because carryover funds were applied to the budget.

A significant amount of the adult education budget is paid through grants and course enrichment fees.

The school’s 160 students from Telstar Regional High School in Bethel, Dirigo High School in Dixfield and Mountain Valley High School in Rumford have 10 vocational programs to choose from.

In other matters at Wednesday’s meeting, students who participated in the annual SkillsUSA competition in Bangor described their activities to the board. Teachers Jen and Peter Barlow accompanied about 16 students. Hunter Fleury-Trimm took home a bronze medal for his portfolio, bulletin board and presentation.

The board also chose officers for the year. Re-elected were Chairman Norman Clanton of Newry; Vice Chairman Kevin Kaulback of Rumford; Treasurer Brenda Gammon; Secretary Melanie Babb; and Finance Committee members Roberta Taylor of Bethel, Wayne Thurston of Peru and Kaulback.

The board approved the purchase of a used John Deere skidder for $28,000 for the wood-harvesting program. Gammon said a tree farmer skidder will be sold to help defray the cost. The rest of the money will come from the student activities account.

In other matters, the board renewed Gammon’s contract following a closed-door  session. Her annual salary is $84,874. She and other staff received 2 percent raises that totaled $26,000.

The next regular board meeting will be Wednesday, May 7, following the budget vote.


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