TURNER — Directors of Maine School Administrative District 52 approved Wednesday a nearly $35 million budget proposal for 2024-25, a 7.7% increase from this year’s $32.5 million.

The biggest factor in the increase is salaries for staff and health insurance, which is roughly $2 million more than this fiscal year, according to Superintendent Cari Medd.

Staff insurance costs increased less than 1% for fiscal year 2024-25, which begins July 1. They increased 6% in fiscal year 2023-24, which ends June 30.

New earned paid leave requirements also drove the budget up by $56,000.

The district will have to pay more for students requiring specialized education in private schools outside the district, she said. That cost is expected to rise by $121,000, which the district is responsible to pay.

Recent state-implemented changes increased the rate and frequency the specialized schools must be paid. Districts must now pay for all school days, not just days students attend.


Last year, the district entered a partnership with the Margaret Murphy Centers for Children, housing one of the center’s programs at Greene Central School for elementary-age students districtwide to attend. It has cut costs and keeps students in the district school.

The district is expecting an increase in the state’s share of the budget, from $16.7 million for 2023-24 to $18.9 million for 2024-25.

The local share of next year’s proposed budget is roughly $15.4 million, with Greene expected to pay about $5.1 million, Leeds roughly $2.8 million and Turner more than $7.4 million.

However, there are still new additions proposed in the budget, Medd said. The district is adding a lacrosse program, along with a full-time athletic trainer for students in grades 7-12 and a full-time athletic department office assistant to support the athletic directors.

Directors are also creating a Capital Improvement Plan to improve facilities, including heating and cooling, according to Medd. Money for paving at Turner Primary School and Leavitt Area High School in Turner were also added to the budget.

A public meeting on the budget will be held May 2 at Leavitt Area High School. Turner, Leeds and Greene residents will vote on the budget May 16.

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