Financial Reality Hits

Tiverton Superintendent Bill Rearick just handed out a budget packet. Here’s a key page:

tivschoolbudget.jpg

Obviously, the teachers’ increase is TBA and estimated. (Amy Mullen got up and asked how they can be considered if there’s no contract.) The bottom line is that, “as of January 8, 2008, the School Department is $149,011 over the spending cap,” and the difference has to be found somewhere. Salaries are slated to increase (whether via steps and non-teacher contracts alone or including guestimated teacher rate increases, I don’t know) $723,294. The excess over the cap is 20.6% of the salary increases. The entire excess could be wiped out by keeping the salary increase at 4.2%, rather than 5.3%.
Instead, people are going to lose their jobs and children are going to lose opportunities and services.

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Greg
Greg
13 years ago

Wow, so instead of getting a lot more than most regular taxpayer’s raises this year, they’d have to settle for just MORE than most regular taxpayer’s raises this year and yet that’s still not good enough?
This is the equivalent of needed to lose some excess weight out of a hotair balloon and instead of dumping out the gold you dump out your partner.

Thomas Schmeling
Thomas Schmeling
13 years ago

Justin,
Interesting numbers. I’m looking for more context, if it’s available. Did the number of employees increase, decrease or stay the same? If there was change, was it in teaching staff, administration, or other support staff?
How did enrollments change from last year? Increase or decrease?
Supplies and Materials and “other costs” increased by a greater percentage than salaries or benefits. Do you know why that was?

Justin Katz
13 years ago

Thomas,
I don’t have any particular sources to answer those questions apart from those readily available to anybody (see, e.g., the RIDOE data page. Student enrollment has been on a downward trend. Staffing, I don’t know (haven’t found a good source).
I would imagine that at least some of the increases in the other categories are related to the ongoing construction (stocking computer rooms and the like), although I’d note that in previous years, such things have decreased as a percentage of the total pie.
I’d wager, too, that the numbers for “salaries” and for “benefits” have yet to incorporate a percentage increase for the teachers in any newly negotiated contract. As I suggested in the post, the information is incomplete.
I’d also point out that the “greater” increases in both Supplies/Materials and Other Costs combined equal just 18% of the incomplete increase in salaries and 15% of the Salaries and Benefits combined increase.

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