New Castle News

May 18, 2012

Union proposes budget without tax hike

Lugene Hudson
New Castle News

NEW CASTLE — Union’s school board introduced a $10 million budget with no tax increase for 2012-13.

However, cuts in personnel and programs are being proposed in order to balance the budget.

Expenditures of $10,063,634 and revenues of $10,018,635 leaves a shortfall of $45,000. In order to balance the budget, the district will dip into its fund balance, which is about $1.75 million, superintendent Dr. Alfonso “Butch” Angelucci said.

The spending plan will be on display in the superintendent’s office until final action is taken at the June 20 meeting.

The proposed cuts represent a savings of $204,750.

They include the furlough of a family consumer science instructor, at a savings of $75,000. According Angelucci, that plan is contingent on staff retirements that could occur by the end of this school year.

Furloughing two teacher’s aides will bring a savings of $24,000, he noted, and a custodian who is retiring will be replaced with a part-time custodian, saving $16,000.

A change in in-house student placement in the special education department would realize the district a savings of $36,000 and a change in transportation in that department would save $40,000, Angelucci said.

Also being cut are junior high athletics — football, girls volleyball, track and basketball — at a savings of $10,000. The program was cut for the 2011-12 school, year but supplemented by the boosters club, which Angelucci said most likely will occur again next year.

The district will implement a fee for driver’s education — $75 per student. That will generate $3,750 per year, Angelucci said.

“Anything in the proposed budget is subject to change before next month’s meeting.”

The district’s property tax is 14.42 mills, but an increase “seems very unlikely,” Angelucci said.

Should the state Legislature vote to return $50 million into funding for the districts, the superintendent pointed out, Union would receive $150,000.

“The work we did last year helped with this year’s plan.”

For the 2011-12 school year, the district cut seven staff members, including an administrator, two teachers, teacher’s aides and office workers.

(Email: lhudson@ncnewsonline.com)