Town’s school cost up 9.9 percent



TRENTON — A Trenton Elementary School budget for next year that, if approved by voters at Town Meeting in May, would require a 9.93 percent increase in local property tax funding was adopted by the school committee Tuesday. 

The $4.32 million budget is 7.47 percent higher than the budget for the current year.  

The main reason the increase in the tax assessment is larger than the budget increase is an anticipated drop of $134,142 in the amount of revenue to be carried over from one year to the next. 

There are two new staff positions in the budget for next year that account for $100,709, or about one-third of the overall budget increase of $300,475. Those positions are a full-time special education teacher and a one-quarter-time behavioral specialist. 

The budget includes $50,000 to continue the school’s pre-kindergarten program for a third year. In each of the first two years, that funding was presented to Town Meeting voters as a separate warrant article. But for next year, it is included in the regular school budget. 

“The Trenton school will not be eligible for state funds for pre-K if it remains outside the normal budget,” Principal Mike Zboray explained. 

The budget includes $1.27 million for “regular instruction” for grades K-8, of which $807,566 is for teacher salaries. 

The budget for special education is $828,087, an increase of 10.64 percent from the current year. 

In addition, Trenton expects to pay $863,965 in high school tuition for 57 Trenton residents next year. 

School officials would like to spend about $65,000 to replace the roof over the library that is showing signs of distress, but they decided not to include that in the budget. Instead, they said they would ask the Board of Selectmen if they wanted to present that expenditure to voters in a separate warrant article. 

 

 

 

Dick Broom

Dick Broom

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Dick Broom covers the towns of Mount Desert and Southwest Harbor, Mount Desert Island High School and the school system board and superintendent's office. He enjoys hiking with his golden retriever and finding new places for her to swim. [email protected]

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