December 10, 2018

Meeting Minutes December 17, 2013


DATE: 01-13-2014

Hartford Board Meeting Minutes-Hartford Board of School Directors

December 17, 2013 @ 5:30 PM

School Board Meeting and Retreat Minutes

Superintendent of Schools Office

Board members present:         Administrators Present:

Jeff Arnold                                          Tom DeBalsi

Peter Merrill                                       Julia Haynes                          

Kevin Christie                                     Jim Vezina                             

Lori Dickerson

Eric Michaels

Kevin Christie called the meeting to order at 5:45 PM.

Approval of Agenda: Peter Merrill moves to accept as presented. Eric Michaels seconds. An Executive Session will be added for personnel evaluations and discussion of the District web site/Board biographies. A unanimous verbal vote passes the motion.

Public Comment relative to items not on the proposed agenda- Jeff Arnold requests Board members who have not added their bios to the web site do so. Lori and Peter will not be adding theirs to the site. Eric Michaels will discuss his view on the subject during Executive Session.

Items Requiring Board Action

  • FY15 Expenditure Budget-Finalization Third reading. Tom DeBalsi presents with Jim Vezina. A hand out of 21 expense description items for consideration in the budget. The tax increase would present an 8.2% tax rate to the public. Discussion continued regarding but not limited to: what to present to the public, what rate, Bond consideration, numbers still moving and being rolled out, staff cuts, retirements, core program cuts versus Arts/sports, transportation and enrollments. Mr. DeBalsi assured the Board, the core programs the District has built up, will not be cut. Eric Michaels moves to present a 4.5% tax rate the Superintendent does. Peter Merrill seconds. Discussion: lower rate preferable for Lori and Peter, Jeff feels the cuts will be too deep. 7:02 PM the question is called. Verbal vote defeats the motion 1 aye 4 nay. Peter Merrill motions to authorize a 4.0 increase with a subcommittee to work with Mr. DeBalsi to look at programs & other items. Lori Dickerson seconds. Discussion: # of Board members on the committee, micromanaging, and imbalance among the Board. Peter Merrill amends the motion to a 4.0% increase with a subcommittee of the whole or lesser work with SOS to achieve the goal of fiscal prudence. Lori Dickerson seconds. Discussion: policy governance level of approach and Board’s responsibility. Transportation discussion of savings if the bus fleet is gone. (Mr. DeBalsi reports there is one complete bid and a partial bid on the purchase of the fleet.) A verbal vote passes the motion 4 aye and 1 nay.

(Peter Merrill suggests the Board purchase more copies of the VSBA book on budget methodologies and the Board will read prior to meeting with SOS on budget items.) The committee will begin meeting in February and Mr. DeBalsi requests the committee concentrate not only on the current budget.

7:15 Dinner is served and the Board conducts a discussion regarding the calendar changes. Year round and economic disadvantaged students were part of the discussion.

7:50 PM the Board returned to the Agenda portion of the Board meeting.

2014 Bond Proposal-Consideration and Finalization   Mr. DeBalsi asks the Board what they want to propose from the 5 issues raised in last week’s meeting. Peter Merrill proposes a 2 Bond items.

  1. 2.5 million for finishing what the Board committed to originally. That would include; athletic field, field house, and track.
  2. Necessary White River School maintenance such as boiler and roof.

Discussion included site preparation costs, HMMS over costs, WABA, grass vs. turf field. Jeff Arnold requests discussing Mr. Laurin’s completion of the HMMS project. This will be discussed in ES under personnel issues.

Peter Merrill moves to present a Bond to complete the original proposed track, artificial turf, field house and make the Bond dependent on the Town of Hartford doing their share to complete the WABA project as proposed. Lori Dickerson seconds. Discussion: stress on the Town/School Board relationship, completion of all projects, and having a joint Bond presented again.

At 8:50 PM Kevin Christie calls the question. A verbal vote 1 aye, 4 nay defeat the motion.

Lori Dickerson moves to present a Bond to complete the projects originally proposed on the School Board’s own merit. Eric Michaels seconds. Discussion: artificial turf or grass field costs comparison

A verbal vote 4 aye and 1 nay passes the motion.

2012 Bond Certificate of Project Completion- The Board signs the certificate presented by Mr. DeBalsi. Discussion continued regarding the remainder of funds available and how to use them. Mr. DeBalsi will look into a Grant writer position as this appears to be a way Districts are gaining access to funds.

Consent Agenda: Minutes November 13, 2013 meeting- corrections. December 11, 2013. Lori Dickerson asks for David Laurin’s correct spelling in one area. Peter Merrill moves to adopt as corrected. Eric Michaels seconds. A unanimous verbal vote passes the motion.

Incidental Information:

  • Executive Session- 9:05 PM Lori Dickerson moves to go into ES for personnel matters. Peter Merrill seconds. A unanimous verbal vote passes the motion.

Returned to public session 10:05 PM. No decisions made.

Motion to adjourn 10:10 PM by Lori Dickerson. Eric Michaels seconds. A unanimous verbal vote passes the motion.

            (Further calendar discussion will be held at a later date TBD by the Board)

Respectfully Submitted,

Carol Bagley