Budget review shows Northborough in good shape

Northborough – The officia l Fisca l Yea r 2011 proposed budget was on display and presented at the March 22 Board of Selectmen meeting.

Board members were treated to a detailed report from Town Administrator John Coderre and came away feeling that, on the whole, the overall numbers are better than in surrounding towns.

Also, in a surprising development, original numbers from the pre- preliminary assessments for the Algonquin Regional High School (ARHS) and Assabet Valley Regional Technical High School (AVRTHS), received last month, were significantly lower.

“This kind of decrease is unprecedented,” Coderre said.

Coderre and his staff used a customary revenue sharing model of the three preliminary entities – the Northborough general fund, the Northborough K-8 schools budget, and the ARHS budget – that showed that the assessment to all could increase 1.6 percent. Final numbers for the ARHS budget, however, showed a decrease of 3.34 percent, which translates into a monetary reduction of $265,735.

The original AVRTHS assessment was $730,000, and final numbers, Coderre said, indicated close to $50,000 less. Coderre was quick to warn the board and town residents not to expect similar numbers or savings next year. These one-time reductions compute to additional capacity to the budget of $442,417.

“My concern is seeing a significant adjustment for next year,” Coderre said. “It’s only a temporary change. I want to caution very strongly of the magnitude of these numbers.”

Coderre stressed the importance of using these additional funds in a smart manner. His plan calls for $301,447 to subsidize the Pay-As-You-Throw (PAYT) Trash Program, $100,000 to fund the filing of a Declaratory Judgment regarding the ARHS’s Massachusetts’s School Building Authority (MSBA) grant reimbursement and $27,600 to fund Town Clerk Election equipment. Coderre continually used “sustainability” as a theme in dealing with town money.

“We’re always planning with every decision we make,” Coderre said. “That goes to the root and to the heart of sustainability.”

Coderre laid out the major issues the town will be facing the next year including participation in the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) Distinguished Budget Award Program, downtown traffic improvements, town offic e buildin g improvements, ARHS’s MSBA Reimbursements, and adjustments to the PAYT Program.

Board members were happy with the work of Coderre and his staff .

“Everything you present is very clear and easy to understand,” Selectman Bill Pantazis said. “You’ve done a great job. I’ll take [a 1.6 percent increase] over a decrease any day. Better to be moving toward the positive rather than what some other towns are facing. We’re okay – and that’s the message.”

In other issues, the board unanimously voted to accept Silas Drive, Copley Drive, Dartmouth Drive, Berkley Road, Beechwood Circle, Woodstone Road and Fawcett Orchard Road as public ways.

Board members also commented on the grand opening of the Senior Center, which took place March 21.

“Seeing all the joy in the people and in their faces makes all the hard work worth it,” Selectman Dawn Rand said.

Short URL: http://www.communityadvocate.com/?p=6732

Posted by on Mar 26 2010. Filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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