New Britain City Journal

New Britain's Weekly Online Newspaper


Board of Education Requests Budget Increase of $4.7 Million

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The Board of Education (BOE) is asking for $4.7 million more from the City for its 2018-19 budget.

Increases in health insurance, salaries and transportation costs amount for much of the increase.

The board of education budget would be at $130.4 million. The increase is at 3.82 percent.

“As we begin the budget process this draft reflects our best estimate as to what our needs will be in the coming year,” said Nick Mercier, vice president of the board of education. “I look forward to working with the Mayor and Common Council as we work to finalize a budget. We all understand the tough fiscal situation our city faces, but we can’t let our school system be a casualty of the State’s inability to manage their finances.”

The following are the increases;

  • Certified Salaries $920,777,+ $511,167 Shift from Grants , + $314,266 Teacher mid-year step 2017-18, + $95,344 Administrator’s 1.98 percent increase
  • Non Certified Salaries 481,724 + $473,223 Unsettled Contracts, + $ 8,501 Other Changes
  • Health Insurance 1,781,638 , + $1,464,571 Projected 10 percent increase, + $915,757 Reduction in use of Reserves, – $598,690 Census reduction & shift
  • FICA/Medicare 9,796 Increase in total salary and shift to Grants
  • Workers’ Compensation 617,000 – $727,000 Medical Claims (New) – $110,000 Based on 3 year average
  • Data Processing 13,000 School Dude Software Maintenance
  • Transportation 760,066 Based on 2017-18 Contract(s), Out-to-bid $380,682 Additional Buses (5) Smalley $310,637 Additional Buses (4) CREC ASI $68,477 Shift from Grants
  • Magnet School Tuition 149,267 Based on projected 2017-18 + 5.5% increase
  • Electricity 156,564 Based on 2016-2017 actual + YTD comparisons
  • Water 3,084 Based on 2016-2017 actual
  • Operating Transfer Out 8,362 Adult Education
  • Decrease in State funding

Reductions include the following;

  • HSA Contribution -94,800 Census reduction
  • Retirement Contributions -58,309 Increase in total salary and shift to Grants
  • Unemployment Comp. -78,000 Based on 3 year average

The School District said from this point forward it will have an an ongoing basis review all object code budgets to identify any additional reductions. This budget assumes a 10 percent increase in health cost premiums. Every 1 percent reduction in rates provides a savings of $147,032, The District will also budget for all known retirements at step 1 unless position is in a shortage area.

In 2016-17 New Britain ranked 164 out of 166 in per pupil expenditures at $13,381 per student. The State average is $16,576.

Last year the City flat funded the board of education as it asked for less than a 1 percent increase.

The BOE will present a budget to the City Board of Finance in March. Cabinet/School/Department Budget Workshops will begin in June following the Common Council adopting a budget.