Region 9 Approves 1.97% Bump for Barlow

The school board approved the budget last week.

(Editor's note: This article has been updated to reflect the fact the vote on the budget was not unanimous, as originally reported.)

The budget for the 2013-2014 school year at Joel Barlow High School will increase 1.97 percent to $22.46 million should Redding and Easton voters approve it later this year.

Last week, by a vote of 7-1, the Region 9 Board of Education approved the request, which was reduced from the original budget proposed by Dr. Bernard Josefsberg, superintendent of schools. Board member Chris Hocker was the lone dissenter. 

According to Mark Lewis, vice chairman of the school board, "due to an enrollment shift, represents a 3.5 percent increase to Redding taxpayers and a 0.17 percent increase to Easton taxpayers."

"The final number was arrived at by trimming small amounts from a number of items and our acceptance of [Principal Tom McMorran's] proposal to reconfigure his original request for an additional full-time security guard to cover the new coming front desk”at Barlow with a part-time security position, overtime, and an increase in hours for a current part-time secretary to cover the attendance calls that are now done by the security staff," Lewis wrote in an email to Patch. "I am happy to report we did decide not to rejoin CABE (the Connecticut Association of Boards of Education), who in my opinion continues to lobby against the interests of students in Redding and Easton, which contributed $7,000 to the reductions from the Administrations original 2.17 percent requested increase." 

Lewis said the school board also authorized $30,000 in security-related expenditures from its capital reserve fund, and up to $75,000 to purchase an architectual design for the replacement of part of the school's roof.

Redding and Easton voters will likely head to the polls in mid-to-late June, Lewis said, to vote on a referendum to request funds for the roof replacement project and the sports stadium area improvements, which includes a turf field.

Redding and Easton voters head to the polls to vote on the school and town budgets on May 7.


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