Updated City Council Schedule
The City Council announced May 8th, the following changes.
May 29th will be the public hearing on the budget, not May 22nd
June 12th is the planned vote on the budget.
May 8th and May 15th, City Council Workshops sessions, other departments will be presenting
May 29th, City Council Meeting and Public Hearing on the budget, Public Comment opportunities at the public hearing
June 12th is the expected vote on the budget. If they can’t make a decision on the 12th, it could be extended until the 19th.
In most cases, Council meetings do not have public comment sections, but workshops do have comment sections.
Here is link to the video of the City Council meeting where the budget information was reviewed.
https://rochesternh.viebit.com/player.php?hash=Qr9oNzo0qSiz Beginning at about the nine minute mark of the video the budget information is reviewed.
Some Additional information sent to City Council on May 6th.
Why should the City Council support the School District Budget proposal
Below are some of my notes from the presentation to the City Council.
- It makes economic sense. Supporting a strong school system in the City enhances the economic conditions in the city. We help provide the workforce to the community. One example is 12 students entering the composite program at Great Bay Community College as Seniors at Spaulding High School. They will complete the program and be available to work for local businesses at graduation. Home values increase when schools are supported by the community. The opposite is true when funding is reduced.
- There is a fundamental problem with the tax cap. 54% of the operating budget is covered by local taxes. The CPI increase helps for that 54%. The CPI increase cannot support the loss of revenue and the new expenditures required by the State. 46% of the budget does not go up based on the CPI, but actually goes down. The loss of revenue does not remove the requirement to provide services.
- The State stopped paying 35% of the NH Retirement employee rate in 2011. That is $1,703,842 in next year’s budget. If we still had the State paying 35%, our budget would be $1,703,842 lower.
- The State Adequacy is reduced by $407,384 next year.
- If we had building aide, it would have provided additional revenue of $820,479.
- Special Education costs have increased for next year by $562,649. Special Education requirements would supposed to be funded at the 40% level from the Federal Government. They have never come close to that amount.
- Medicaid, another revenue stream that supports our required services for special education students will be going down by $360,000 next year.
- The tax cap places city schools at a disadvantage. Schools with town meetings vote on a budget, if it fails they have a default budget. The default budget takes into account reduced revenues from the State, increased expenses from the State, and bonding projects already approved.. It allows continuing services to be provided. The tax cap does not do that.
- Communities that do not get State adequacy funds, meaning they are property rich, are not impacted when the adequacy aide is reduced.
- Look at our cost per pupil. Spaulding High’s cost per pupil is early 20% below the state average.
- Look at what the budget would be if we met the average cost per pupil of the State. Just the difference at the High School would be 1400 students X $3,070 = $4,298,000.
- Communities with a tax cap, Nashua, Manchester, Somersworth, Dover. All have had a tax cap adjustment at some point.
- FY 2019 School Department Budgetcc (2)-1ckhj47