The Recorder – Hawlemont School Committee reallocates $118,000 of excess funds from transportation budget

Published: 09/09/2022 13:34:43

Modified: 09/09/2022 13:30:57

CHARLEMONT — The Hawlemont Regional School District School Board corrected a transportation error in the fiscal year 2023 budget at Wednesday’s meeting, allowing excess money to be spent in other areas.

TMS, the district’s former business management department that it shared with the Mohawk Trail Regional School District, counted the transmission line twice when calculating a total budget, according to new district business manager William Lataille. . He said that error caused the total budget to exceed its allocated amount by $118,398.

On Wednesday, the school committee approved the transfer of funds from the transport budget to various other items, correcting this initial error.

Committee member Cheryl Handsaker asked if taking this money out of the transportation budget would affect the bus system. Lataille explained that the bus company was chosen and contracted through a competitive bidding system, and that money was simply double counted and not needed to provide transportation for FY23.

The committee allocated $12,545 for the two-district, or 2D, agreement to cover the cost of shared expenses between Hawlemont and Mohawk Trail. The school board also transferred $12,930 and $29,799 to two different positions to cover the cost of special education teaching positions. This money completes funding for a full-time educator and allows the school to hire a second full-time teacher. Although they are partially funded by grants, Hawlemont manager Amber Tulloch said she was unable to create a job posting for both roles because there were not enough people. money in the budget.

In addition, $25,000 had been mistakenly withdrawn from the district contracts budget line. The school committee reallocated this money to its original purpose.

Money for a literary and mathematical trainer was also reinjected into the budget. Of the money reinvested in these lines, $5,537 is for the literacy coach and $3,000 for the math coach. The rest of these budgets are funded by grants.

The committee also added $4,176 for custodian salaries and $2,250 for teachers’ supplies. These budget categories were both underfunded, according to Lataille.

An English language learning position was removed from the FY23 budget because the school district believed it did not need this teacher. However, students arrived at the school needing this service, so the teacher was brought back. The committee approved $12,545 to fund this position.

In addition, the committee changed the amount budgeted for substitute teachers’ salaries, increasing their salary from $12 per hour to $15. These salaries will align with the rate for the rest of the schools in the Mohawk Trail Regional School District.

“It’s long overdue,” school board member Elizabeth Billings said of the pay raises.

Also to align with Mohawk Trail, the Hawlemont School Board increased the cost of lunches for teachers to $4.02. This increases the cost of lunches by about 40 cents.

All of these changes do not change the total FY23 budget of approximately $2.64 million.

“These changes only address the error of underfunded or no funds areas,” explained Sheryl Stanton, superintendent of Mohawk Trail and Hawlemont.

Bella Levavi can be reached at 413-930-4579 or