• Message from the Superintendent, Dr. Moore

    Highlights for the 2019-2020 Budget

    April 12, 2019

     

    While the district budget will not be finalized until May 1, this update provides some highlights for the spending plan for 2019-20.  The development process this year has been challenging at times and we would like to thank the staff and community for all their efforts.  A number of important changes have been made to the preliminary budget originally discussed at the Board of Education meeting held on March 20.  Ice hockey and golf have been restored with participants bearing some of the costs; a transportation contract for athletics has been successfully negotiated; and our summer accelerated language program in French, Italian, and Spanish will be offered on a tuition-basis to new students.  

     

    Significant cost drivers in the budget continue to be transportation expenses, health benefits, and tuition costs for out-of-district placements.  This includes special education, vocational, as well as other alternative programs.  These increases are not unique to RBR and are of concern to many districts throughout the state, particularly because state aid has not kept pace with rising costs.  Although goals for recruitment and enrollment of tuition-paying students have been met for the incoming 9th grade class, the district has experienced a decline in revenue from tuition-paying students since 2015. 

     

    Facing these limitations, the Board of Education finance committee worked with the RBR Administration to review allocation requests and identify areas for savings.  Reductions were made in some assistant coaching positions, facility repairs, and equipment purchases but the impact on academic, athletic, and extracurricular programs has been minimized.  Families are being asked to bear more costs for AP, IB, and Dual Enrollment programs as well as some athletic and summer enrichment programs.  Our communities are being asked to contribute more in revenues.

     

    With these targeted reductions and revenue enhancements, the budget supports the district’s commitment to excellence for all students. A new alternative education program, Inspire Academy, will be initiated that will reduce out-of-district placement costs, better serve at-risk students, and utilize the Source for counseling services.  Because reductions to the professional staff have been minimized, class sizes in core academic areas will be maintained.

     

    The district’s fiscal position has been strengthened by the passage of the facilities referendum in December 2018.  This will support the creation of state-of-the-art learning spaces and other improvements with construction scheduled to begin in November 2019.  These enhancements will benefit our total school program and stabilize the enrollment of tuition-paying students.  In short, the proposed budget for 2019-20 reflects our commitment to our students, our school, and our values.  

     

    The following charts show the regional district’s portion of the tax levy per each sending district.  

     

    Municipality

    Tax Rate Per $100 of Assessed value

    Taxes per $100,000

    of Assessed Value

    Little Silver

     $0.43 (1 cent increase)

               $430

    Red Bank

     $0.49  (5 cent increase)

               $490

    Shrewsbury

     $0.48  (-1 cent decrease)

               $480

     

     

    Municipality

    Average Assessment

    Annual Regional School Tax

    Little Silver

         $663,730

      $2,854

    Red Bank

         $366,231

       $1,795

    Shrewsbury

         $552,125

        $2,650