Region 12’s $22 million budget heads to residents
WASHINGTON — The Region 12 school board is sending a nearly $22 million school budget to voters next month.
The spending plan is $589,000, or 2.76 percent, higher than the current budget, but lower than the initial department requests and Superintendent Patricia Cosentino’s proposal.
It is set for a district meeting on May 7 with the possible referendum on May 8. Region 12 includes Washington, Bridgewater and Roxbury.
The Region 12 school board’s budget vote came after a public hearing earlier this month where three people spoke against the increase and one in favor of the budget.
“I appreciate your efforts, but for me it’s not enough,” Roxbury First Selectwoman Barbara Henry told the board at that meeting.
Board member Michelle Gorra has said the largest driver for the budget increase was $526,000 for health insurance premiums. An additional $100,000 is also needed for special education and another $100,000 for teacher contracts.
Among the cuts made in the budget are two school buses, 2.5 paraprofessional positions and $20,000 from the superintendent’s salary. The current superintendent is going to New Fairfield at the end of this school year.