LEWISTON — School administrators outlined an initial $105.7 million budget proposal Monday night and told school officials that significant reductions will need to be made in the coming weeks.

The spending plan represents a 7% increase from the current budget of $98.8 million, however Superintendent Jake Langlais said he will begin offering options for reductions to the School Committee on Wednesday.

He declined to share specific details about the proposed reductions, but told School Committee members that it totals $3 million.

This year’s budget process will be particularly difficult for school officials. The state has indicated it will provide $1.3 million less to Lewiston schools this year, a sizable shortfall which surprised administrators when preliminary totals were released in January.

The state is offering school districts less additional funding for economically disadvantaged students this year. Plus, enrollment in the district has dropped, a key factor considered by the state’s funding formula, Langlais explained.

The district also has 37 positions funded by federal pandemic relief aid, which will sunset at the end of the next school year in 2024. Langlais said he hopes to start determining which positions the district can afford to keep, and which will need to be cut this year.

Rising salaries and benefits represent the largest increased cost in the budget, projected to rise $4.8 million alone compared to last year.

The projected tax impact has not been calculated.

Wednesday’s School Committee meeting will take place 5:30 p.m. at Connors Elementary School.

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