Finance & Budget Committee Meeting Minutes
The meeting was called to order on January 2nd at 3:00 p.m. in the Supervisory Union conference room. This meeting was a reschedule of the meeting planned for December 21 which was cancelled due to weather. In attendance were Mark Lyons, Brent Tewksbury, Laura Moore, Jennifer Nye, Tim Crowley, John Bacon, Steve Murray, Julia Pritchard, Bill Kirkland, Jay Paterson, and Brenda Buzzell.
Mark handed out budget package dated 1/2/12 and we also reviewed all of the questions submitted by board members to the administration along with responses. It was agreed to reduce the board printing line by 2500. The remaining issues were highlighted and put up on the board for discussion. Theses included: how much to budget for tech equipment, further discussion of the plans for preschool and the transportation impacts, the Room 184 proposal, the half-time K-4 health educator, along with the amount for budgeted for conferences and potential use of the FY 2011 surplus.
The total cost for these remaining expense items after revenue offsets was approximately $215,000. The consensus of the board was that administration should look for ~$20,000 in reductions and further examine whether or not to provide preschool transportation as planned in the proposal. Mark was asked to be prepared for multiple scenarios for using the surplus to reduce the tax rate for the FY 13 budget and to request approval from voters for ongoing tax stabilization.
Due to circumstances described during the previous board meeting, Bill asked for approval to begin the bid process for a pickup truck and sander in the current fiscal year and the board agreed.
The meeting adjourned at 5:35 p.m. The next meeting is scheduled for January 25 at 3:30 p.m. in the second floor conference room.
The December 1 meeting began at 4:00 p.m. in the second floor conference room at BTMES. In attendance were Laura Moore, Mark Lyons, Jennifer Nye, Dr. Bacon, Tim Crowley, Bill Kirkland, Brenda Buzzell, Steve Murray, Jay Paterson.
Mark distributed a balance sheet as of 6/30/11 (report date 12/1/11). Also attached was information about the food services account. Mark expressed his wish to budget a transfer to that account to cover equipment and repairs and make up for the small deficit ($3089). The consensus was that Mark should put some number between $5,000-10,000 toward that purpose and identify it clearly in the budget and build it into future budgets.
Dr. Bacon shared the latest news he had heard from the Department of Education regarding the statewide tax rate, but there are still a lot of variables to be determined.
Mark shared a report dated 12/1/11 on the Fiscal Year 2013 Expense Budget - By Object. He said he will also get the group a copy of the Fiscal Year 2013 in Expense Budget report format.
Tim Crowley highlighted some proposed changes, particularly in the staffing area. Steve talked briefly about facilities, transportation, and vehicles. There was general discussion about the overall rate of increase board members would be willing to consider.
Julia Pritchard was at a conference, so presentation on the Special Eduction portion of the budget was delayed until December 7. On that date the board will meet as a Finance Committee at 5:00 p.m., just before the regular board meeting. The group adjourned at 5:45 p.m.
The December 7 meeting was held in BTMES library, and began at 5:00 p.m. In attendance were Bill Kirkland, Steve Murray, Julia Pritchard, Jay Paterson, Tim Crowley, Laura Moore, Dr. Bacon, Brent Tewksbury, Jennifer Nye, Brenda Buzzell.
Julia gave a presentation on the Special Education budget. In addition to the Fiscal Year 2013 Expense Budget dated 12/5/11, she passed out sheets which provided more information about proposed changes in EEE and Room "184" staffing. Both of these changes would involve adding services. Because they come through Special Education they have complicated impacts on the budget. Not all money is raised locally, expanding EEE services would increase our ADM average in the future, etc.
She also passed out a paper titled "Special Education Changes to FY 2013 Budget Proposal," which listed specific changes and the rationale.
It was agreed that all board members would get their questions on any portion of the proposed budget to Jennifer Nye no later than December 14. She will coordinate research and response.
The next meeting will be held on 12/21 at 5:00 p.m. in lieu of the regular board meeting. Discussion will continue at the regular board meeting on 1/4/12, and at subsequent meetings if necessary.
The Finance Committee adjourned at 6:00 p.m. and the group moved to the regular meeting of the board.
The meeting was called to order on October 26th at 4:00 p.m. in the second floor conference room.
In attendance: Mark Lyons, Jay Paterson, Jennifer Nye, Julia Pritchard, Laura Moore, Bill Kirkland, Brenda Buzzell, and John Bacon.
Mark gave an update on the audit status. The auditors are in the office the last week in October and the first week in November, and again in December. He thinks there will be a draft by early to mid-December with fairly solid numbers; requiring the management response to audit in order to be finalized.
He then passed out Financial Projection Worksheet & budget reports dated 10/25/11. He explained how the projection sheet incorporated expenses that are anticipated, but not reflected in the YTD expenditures and encumbrances on the expenditure report (e.g., substitute expenses, electricity). The group reviewed and discussed the report and the need for the projections to be as accurate as possible.
Julia mentioned that in special education unexpected circumstances may arise at any time that may require different strategies and placements. This impacts both expense and revenue, but the needs of the students is the top priority.
Items that may impact next year's budget include: $144,000 in ARRA funding going away; not as much Title II money next year, which may require reconsideration of how those funds are used; technology staffing needs, which will be presented to all boards in the SU; and busing configurations/arrangements. The group talked in general about technology and technology staffing at BTEMS.
The next finance meeting will not be held on November 23rd due to Thanksgiving. It will be on November 30, time to be determined. The focus will be discussion of the first draft of the FY 13 budget.
July 2011 Finance Committee Notes
A special meeting was held on July 14th. The purpose was to review the increase in the FY 2012 tax rate and other miscellaneous items. The meeting was called to order in the second floor conference room at 2:45. In attendance were: Julia Pritchard, Tim Crowley, John Bacon, Bill Kirkland, Brent Tewksbury, Mark Lyons, Brenda Buzzell, Jay Paterson, and Jennifer Nye.
Mr. Lyons explained how the "State On-Behalf Tech Center Tuition Reimbursement" had been placed incorrectly in the form submitted to the state. He distributed an example of how the Spaulding Union High School District Budget Revenue Summary and the Tax Rate forms for Barre City and Barre Town will be structured in the future to avoid confusion. He answered questions and apologized for the error. Mr. Kirkland and Ms. Buzzell said they had been contacted by community members who were unpleasantly surprised. It was also mentioned that the article in the newspaper was confusing as to what the impact was in the tax rate in Barre City vs. Barre Town and that it is a highly complicated concept to explain to community members. Mr. Crowley mentioned that his experience with the town and the board was that mistakes happen and errors need to be caught and fully explained. Dr. Bacon mentioned that the Spaulding Board would be meeting on Monday, July 25, and the Barre Town board agreed with his recommendation that they take the lead in making any statement as the item involved the Tech Center.
Ms. Pritchard passed out anticipated enrollment as of July 13. It stood at 793, an increase of 3 over last year. Additionally, inquiries continue to be made.
Mr. Kirkland said they are advertising for 1 or 2 new bus drivers. They may be able to keep the same number of buses next year and not need to add another route. The bus that was involved in the accident is back in commission. The roof project is going well and they are ahead on overall maintenance this summer.
Mr. Lyons passed out Financial Projection Worksheet & budget reports dated 7/12/11. The group reviewed and discussed the report. There was a positive projected year end balance of $360,690 after accounting for the fund balance deficit and the health insurance adjustment. Part of this is surplus is due to ARRA funding that was received this fiscal year and covered 2 special education positions. Additionally, Education Jobs Fund monies have come to Barre Town ($144,283) but are not included in calculations. Julia Pritchard mentioned there would be additional expenses associated with the the current Special Education audit and 2 potential out-of-district placements for the coming year.
There was a brief discussion about the board retreat on August 17.
The meeting adjourned at 4:00 p.m.
The meeting was called to order on May 25th at 3:30 p.m. in the second floor conference room.
In attendance: Mark Lyons, Alice Worth, Jay Paterson, Tim Crowley, Julia Pritchard, Brent Tewksbury, Bill Kirkland, Brenda Buzzell. John Bacon arrived at 3:45 and Laura Moore at 4:00.
Mr. Lyons passed out Financial Projection Worksheet & budget reports dated 5/17/11. The group reviewed and discussed the report.
There was a positive projected year end balance of $253,327 after accounting for fund balance deficit and the health insurance adjustment. The figure does not include the funds from the state ($144,283) that are part of the second distribution of ARRA funding.
Mark verified that busing encumbrances and FY 11 expenditures are figured into this total. They are included in the figures on p. 3 (projection worksheet) which produces projected expenditures.
The financial picture was factored into discussions on personnel items related to administration, transportation, and maintenance. The discussions included the potential roles and responsibilities of an Assistant Principal, specifically with regard to behavior issues. Both Julia and Tim said that a position with this type of authority would relieve of the administrators of having to duplicate efforts of another qualified individual. It would carry authority with parents and the community. Additionally, there are certain things at the school that can only be done by an administrator. The consensus of the group was that restructuring, renaming, and/or expanding the current structure and positions to address this need would be an acceptable option; however, creating and funding an additional position was not.
Alice Worth passed out job descriptions for Transportation Coordinator and Director of Facilities. This was done to better define the roles as currently in place. One significant change was making the Transportation Coordinator a full-time position, which would be in lieu of the current school year calendar with additional pay in the summer.
Mark, Julia, and Tim left at 4:30. It was agreed that more discussion and specifics about the personnel items would take place at the regular board meeting on June 2. The rest of the group adjourned at 5:05 p.m.
April Finance Committee
The meeting was called to order at 3:30 p.m. in Alice Worth's office.
In attendance: Mark Lyons, Alice Worth, Jay Paterson, Tim Crowley, Julia Pritchard, Brent Tewksbury.
Mr. Lyons passed out Financial Projection Worksheet & budget reports dated 4/27/11. The group reviewed and discussed the report.
There was a positive projected year end balance of $150,578 after accounting for fund balance deficit and the health insurance adjustment. Part of this is due to ARRA funding that was received this fiscal year that covered 2 special education positions.
However, it was noted that the projected year end balance did not include encumbrances for substitutes, nor the monthly bus maintenance fees due to the town. There was some confusion about where those bus maintenance fees are shown in the budget. It was believed to be in line 100-1-1-2711-5442-00 (Transportation-Equipment Lease), but Mark was going to verify and we will try to estimate those by our next Finance meeting.
Discussed that Education Jobs Fund monies coming/had come to Barre Town ($144,283) but not included in calculations. Mark was sure about the money, but not about the specific parameters of the funds at this point. He was going to look into that and have information in the coming month.
The next finance meeting agenda will include discussions about the items mentioned above and potential personnel changes (administration/transportation) and their budgetary impact.
The meeting adjourned at 4:25.
The meeting was called to order at 3:30 p.m. in the 2nd Floor conference room
In attendance: Mark Lyons, Brenda Buzzell, John Bacon, Alice Worth, Jay Paterson, Bill Kirkland, Laura Moore, Tim Crowley, Julia Pritchard.
Mr. Lyons passed out Financial Projection Worksheet & budget reports dated 3/22/11.
Discussed that Education Jobs Fund monies that will be coming to Barre Town ($142,133) via the Vermont Department of Education are not reflected in this report. They can be used in FY 12 and/or FY 13.
There was discussion about booking the health insurance liability for July and August (for current year teachers) in this fiscal year per the auditors’ recommendation. Mark said he would make that change and it will be reflected in the next financial projection.
Mark also said he would make sure the contractual changes for the recently signed bus drivers, custodian, and clerical workers’ contract are reflected.
There was a brief conversation about the auditors’ report, which will be reviewed in more detail by the auditor in a presentation to our April 27 board meeting.
Specifically, there was discussion about two items:
Julia mentioned that a major reason this year was looking good was because of some one-time ARRA funding that special education was able to use to cover some expenses and that will not be available in the future and that next year will be much tighter. These funds are not reflected in next year’s budget.
Other expenses that may impact the budget from now until fiscal year end include: substitutes, fuel, bus repair, and at least one maternity leave.
Per John’s request, Mark discussed his interest in adding another person to the business office staff to help address some of the recurring issues in the four audits which are the result of volume of work. A position previously existed and he would like add it back in. Mark was confident that it could be added without an increase in the assessment to the schools via an indirect rate negotiated with the state for grant management, etc. The sense of the board was that something should be done. He is planning to research a variety of options, including outsourcing some functions, and will move forward. The plan will be brought to the SU board.
The regular February finance committee meeting was the week of vacation (2/23) so it was not held. An informational budget session for the public was held on 2/28 in the cafeteria. Brenda Buzzell, William Kirkland, Laura Moore, Brent Tewksbury, and Jay Paterson were in attendance.
Jay Paterson and Mark Lyons met at 3:30 p.m. in the second floor conference room.
Mark shared the Expenditure Report, Revenue Report, and Capital Improvement Fund Revenue & Expense report all dated 1/25/11.
He also shared the sheet outlining the tax rate information as submitted for the vote on Town Meeting.
Jay worked on the points for public info (below):
BARRE TOWN MIDDLE
ELEMENTARY SCHOOL TAX INFORMATION
The meeting was called to order at 8:45 am in the SU conference room. In attendance were Dr. Bacon, Mark Lyons, Laura Moore, Brenda Buzzell, Alice Worth, Julia Pritchard, Bill Kirkland, Jay Paterson and Bonnie Brigante and John Mudgett from Mudgett Jennett (the auditors).
There was discussion about the FY 10 audit and how to account for the agreed need to change the Barre Town health insurance premiums from a September 1-August 31 period to a July 1-June 30 timeframe. This will get all the schools in the district on the same cycle and more accurately reflects which fiscal year the commitments are made.
Brenda asked for sense of the board members present and all agreed (Jay moved and Bill seconded) that for FY 12 planning purposes the fund balance should reflect the combined audited deficits for FY 09 and FY 10. At the same time, we will be working toward aligning the health insurance contracts between now and the end of June 30, 2012. This is an estimated adjustment of $75,000-$100,000 over that timeframe.
This time period corresponds with negotiations for the new standardized teachers' contract, which may provide an opportunity to make adjustments through that process. It will also allow us to realize potential savings projected at the FY 11 year end, along with an anticipated distribution of federal funds from the State of Vermont.
The meeting ended at 10:30 a.m.
The meeting was called to order at 3:40 in the second floor conference room. In attendance were Tim Crowley, Julia Pritchard, Jay Paterson, Mark Lyons, Alice Worth
Discussion was held regarding the FY12 Budget proposal and the FY11 budget projection for 12/31/10.
Mark said he would review the capital improvement fund revenue and expenses to be sure those are captured in FY 10 budget figures.
Julia handed out a worksheet on paraeducator staffing for FY11 and FY 12.
The 11/17 BTMES School Board meeting also functioned as the November Finance Committee meeting and proceedings are in those minutes.
Barre Town School Board
The meeting began at 3:30 p.m. in the 2nd Floor Conference Room at BTMES. In attendance were Dr. Bacon, Tim Crowley, Alice Worth, Julia Pritchard, Mark Lyons, Jay Paterson, Brenda Buzzell, Bill Kirkland, Laura Moore, Brent Tewksbury, Theresa MacAdams. Terri Salvador and Steve Murray also attend for parts of the meeting.
Mark Lyons shared the following documents: BTEMS Quarterly Statement FY 11, Qtr. 1; Fiscal Year 2012 Expense Budget (detail and summary); Fiscal Year 2012 Budget Development Calendar.
There was discussion about the current year budget projections. Mr. Lyons had been working closely with school administrators to verify that everything is in the correct place in the budget.
It was noted that the projected fund balance still need to be adjusted for the reduced interest projected.
Mr. Kirkland also wanted to be sure that contract changes regarding the insurance coverage for para-educators (dental coverage and disability) were reflected correctly in the FY 10 and/or FY 11 budgets.
There was discussion about the first draft of the FY 2012 expense budget. A lot of work has been done, but Special Education still has to be finalized. Julia Pritchard and Mark Lyons plan to have a conversation prior to the next board meeting on 11/3/10.
Other items discussed, included: the contract with custodians and bus drivers; how the class size policy may impact next year; the roof fund and kitchen renovation expenses which were included in last year’s budget; other lines that needed small adjustments, such as funds for elections; and where the need for a new telephone system might be place in the budgeting process.
Mr. Kirkland asked for an executive session at 4:55 p.m. to discuss a transportation personnel issue. It was seconded by Mr. Paterson and passed. Mr. Crowley, Ms. Worth, Brenda Buzzell, Dr. Bacon, Mark Lyons, Julia Pritchard, Mr. Kirkland, Mr. Paterson, Mr. Murray went into executive session until 5:00 p.m.
After the executive session there was a brief conversation about transportation issues in general, and Dr. Bacon handed out a transportation proposal for discussion. It was decided that Dr. Bacon, Mr. Kirkland, and Steve Murray would discuss the proposal with bus drivers and get their feedback.
There was a general conversation about Challenges for Change, budgetary targets, community outreach, etc. The general consensus as the special education figures became more solid, the picture for BTMES would become clearer in the next couple of weeks.
The meeting adjourned at 5:25 with a motion by Jay Paterson and second by Bill Kirkland.
The finance committee will next meet as part of the regularly scheduled meeting of the full school board on November 17, 2010 at 6:00 p.m. in the BTMES library. The next regular meeting of the finance committee is scheduled for December 22, 2010, at 3:30 p.m. in the BTMES second floor conference room.
Barre Town School Board
The meeting began at 3:30 p.m. in Principal Worth’s office. In attendance were Dr. Bacon, Mr. Crowley, Ms. Worth, Jay Paterson, Brenda Buzzell, Laura Moore, Brent Tewksbury, and Mark Lyons. Julia Pritchard later joined the meeting.
Mr. Lyons, the new Business Manager for the Supervisory Union, introduced himself to all board members.
He presented a summary report for FY 10, dated 9/22/10, which was discussed. Items of particular note: in FY 10 budget there had been an anticipated carry over from FY 09 of $109,637, while the fund balance coming into the year was actually ($90,354); interest income was substantially below budgeted amount ($69,384), and also had to be adjusted for the current year; in FY 10 some grant income was incorrectly listed with the General Fund revenue. (Likewise, $29,000 in anticipated revenue for the current year budget – for Early Education Initiative -- had to be moved from the FY 11 General Fund.) The unaudited balance at the end of FY 10 was ($38,167).
It’s anticipated that all expenses have been recorded for the year ending 6/30/10.
Mr. Lyons also presented the current year budget dated 9/22/10, with amendments.
Mr. Crowley, Ms. Worth, and Ms. Pritchard have met with Mr. Lyons to verify the budget line items. They will meet again in the coming weeks, along with Steve Murray, to identify current year savings. These suggestions will be presented at the next Finance Committee meeting.
Mr. Tewksbury suggested that the financial reports (maybe for prior month end) be sent to board members prior to finance committee meetings.
Barre Town School Board
The meeting began at 3:30 p.m. in the 2nd Floor Conference Room at BTMES. In attendance were Dr. Bacon, Mr. Crowley, Jay Paterson, Brenda Buzzell, Bill Kirkland, Donna Kelty, Julia Pritchard, and Linda Rosa.
The school board financial report dated 5/26/10 was reviewed. Item of note:
2600-5112-00 – Overage in custodial salaries. Detail for this line were provided for review re the monthly increase in projected overage.
Linda Rosa also provided a budget revenue summary (including projected expenditures). Dr. Bacon mentioned that the budget revenue summary should include another $40,000 to reimburse half the cost of bus purchase (2711-5730-00). This results in a projected surplus at year end.
There was discussion re the Special Education Department being notified that they should expect a full audit of FY 10 expenditures sometime in the next fiscal year. Julia Pritchard and her staff will meet with Linda Rosa during her remaining time in Vermont to review details, ensure all data is current (including foster care students placed in Barre Town), and particulars are in order to the greatest degree possible.
Per Jay Paterson’s request, Linda Rosa provided a list of recommendations for school boards. These included: special education and facilities director in the finance meetings; using purchase orders for all expenditures other than salaries and benefits in ADS (to aid in accurate forecasting); annual revenue projections provided monthly to finance committee beginning in January each year; salaries/benefits report provided final contract hiring in August.
Another suggestion from the group was the inclusion of grant reports/activity/funding information.
Other discussion was held regarding the budget development process in general, the use of interest projections in building budgets, what/if any reserve or contingency, and effective reports and information for boards.
It was determined that future warrants will include account numbers and account name along with detail about amount and payee.
The meeting adjourned at 4:45 p.m. The committee will not meet for the next few months. The next regular meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, September 22, 2010 at 3:30 p.m. in the BTMES second floor conference room.
Barre Town School Board Finance Committee
The meeting began at 3:30 p.m. in the 2nd Floor Conference Room at BTMES. In attendance were Mr. Crowley, Ms. Worth, Ms. Pritchard, Bill Kirkland and Jay Paterson.
The financial report for April 17 was reviewed, along with outstanding questions from the March meeting. We also reviewed a list of questions the administration had submitted to the business manager for review. Items of interest:
1100-5220-00 - A programming glitch lead to an incorrect figure. Social Security appears $68k over, but is actually $10k
2600-5112-00 & 2711-5112-00 - Salaries for Custodians & Transportation are over by approximately with 2 months remaining. Do these lines include overtime and substitutes? How much overtime, if any, was built into the budget for FY10?
2310-5441-00 - Ayers Street purchase amount to be moved to last fiscal year budget
2575-5442-00 - Copier rental over
2711-5730-00 - Transportation equipment reflects purchase of special needs bus for ~$84,000. A grant will be offsetting $40,000 of that amount.
Special education expenditures are less than budgeted, but there will be a corresponding reduction in reimbursements, which will impact the final figures.
An overview of special education funding is suggested topic for future finance committee meeting.
Ms. Rosa will be travelling to Vermont in the coming weeks. We will request a meeting through Dr. Bacon to review our financial situation, and discuss revenue streams and accounts.
Barre Town School Board Finance Committee
The meeting began at 3:30 p.m. in the 2nd Floor Conference Room at BTMES. In attendance were Dr. Bacon, Mr. Crowley, Jay Paterson, and Brenda Buzzell.
The school board financial report dated 3/17/10 was reviewed and a number of items were discussed. Items of note:
1100-5110-07 – Part of enrichment teacher categorized in general
instruction, and will be moved.