DIXFIELD — As the Regional School Unit 10 board began the annual budget process Monday, Superintendent Craig King said he hopes staffing and program cuts made last year will be restored.

The current budget of $36.2 million prompted the elimination of 44 full- and part-time positions last year.

King said contractual agreements with the district’s 550 employees will add $810,000, and an expected health insurance premium cost hike of 5 percent will add $250,000.

He said he expects fuel costs to decline by $75,000.

Reinstating some of the after-school and other programs is estimated to cost about $150,000.

“We cut too deeply last year,” he said.


The cuts included a reduction in hours or elimination of some library services, social workers and art, and larger class sizes.

State general purpose aid to education is expected to remain flat for 2015-16, at $18.1 million, King said. Residents in the district’s 12 towns raised just over $17 million, and about $1 million is expected from carryover, gate receipts, Maine Care and tuition.

Also requiring at least partial payment this year are funds owed to multiyear MaineCare-supported programming.

The district’s nutrition program is also $300,000 in debt, he said.

The district, along with about a dozen others in the state, is in litigation with the Maine Department of Health and Human Services over funds the state says the districts owe. RSU 10’s share is $700,000.

During the next few weeks, each building administrator will present his or her goals and the negative repercussions of the budget and personnel reductions from school year 2014-15.

Once the board finalizes a proposed 2015-16 budget, several public hearings will be held before a first districtwide vote is taken. That figure will be voted on in each town two weeks later.

RSU towns include Buckfield, Hartford, Sumner, Canton, Peru, Dixfield, Carthage, Mexico, Rumford, Byron, Roxbury and Hanover.

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