Voters approve budget for WLC district
WILTON – About 60 people spent less than an hour on Friday night approving an operating budget of about $12.3 million and approving the use of accumulated interest on the school bond.
The warrant consisted of four articles, the fewest anyone could recall.
School Board Chairman Geoff Brock explained the budget, noting the high percentage of the total that is nondiscretionary, such as salaries, benefits, insurance and retirement.
Lyndeborough resident Kevin Boette asked if any money had been unspent last year, and if so, what happened to it.
Brock noted that a school budget is prepared 18 months in advance and that the board has to make "some educated guesses," noting that money has to be in the budget in order to be spent and that it’s impossible to anticipate some income. About $400,000 was left, and that money was returned to the two towns to reduce taxes.
There was no other discussion.
Board member Jim Button said $3,300 in interest had been earned on the school bond, which had been invested when it was received. The board wished to use that money to pay down the interest on the bond, which was approved.
Board member Fran Bujak explained changes that had been made in the district’s Capital Improvement Plan, particularly relating to the replacement of the high school roof. The roof was last replaced during the renovation in 1999, and the estimated cost of replacing it all is $500,000.
"We had the roof evaluated," he said, "and a large portion will last another five years."
Further payments into the fund have therefore been delayed until 2020-21. There is currently $257,000 in the fund, and the board is withdrawing from that to replace the roof over the gym and the library over the next two years.
Those officials who are retiring were recognized: Cary Hughes and Kelly Eshbeck from the Budget Committee and Mary Guild and Fran Bujak from the School Board.