School budget discussions continue

The Warrensburg Central school board heard about cutbacks, savings and boosted costs as they reviewed anticipated expenses of their Transportation, Buildings and Grounds division at the budget committee's Feb. 21 meeting.

A full-time position now paying $8,500 annually at their centralized print office not be filled, in order to save taxpayer money.

The Cable television connection in the employee break room at the school bus garage was terminated in mid-January, saving about about $65 per month. The high school and elementary school are not charged by Time Warner for cable connections, as the company shoulders the costs for connections to educational facilities.

The trash pickup at both schools was decreased several weeks ago from four times per week to three. The savings to taxpayers is estimated to be $100 weekly, or about $40,000 per year.

Green fiber units have been installed to recycle paper products. The possibility of renting compactors is being looked into as well.

The work of applying sealant to the high school parking lot will be put out to bid along with the option of sealing the back parking lot at the Elementary School.

It is hoped that by leasing three new buses, a proposal up for public vote March 9, the school will reap savings on repairs. The transportation for special needs children - which involves long-distance travel to specialized services in the Capital Region - is contracted out. The school board anticipates that these services may cost more this next year.

Gov. Paterson's proposed 2010-11 budget calls for a reduction of $605,000 in state aid from the current school district budget. The total gap, however, is predicted to be $700,000, when including non-recurring federal stimulus monies.

The next budget session of the school board - in conjunction with the community budget advisory committee - is scheduled for 6 p.m. March 1 in the High School Library. The expenses related to instruction, pupil services, and employee benefits are to be discussed.

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