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Code violations, new construction and budget discussed

Littleton School Board

December 09, 2009
LITTLETON—School Administrative Unit's (SAU) 84's Daisy Bronson Middle School and Gallen Career and Technical Center campuses again topped Littleton Schools Board's meeting, held Monday.

In the works is a proposal to the Planning and Zoning Board outlining the problems with the two buildings and possible solutions. Daisy Bronson is in violation of state and federal handicap accessibility laws in addition to having several structural problems. The handicap accessible ramp added last year was a temporary fix and the Board deems a new facility as necessary because of the mounting code violations. In lieu of a new building, one proposed solution is housing the Middle School along with the High School.

The Career and Technical Center (CTC) is facing less pressing issues, however, still of concern to the Board. Issues surrounding mold, poor air quality, lack of natural light, and inadequate space to meet curriculum needs continue to surface for the CTC. On Jan. 4, a mailer containing information about a new CTC facility will be sent to Littleton residences, and on Jan. 6 the Board will begin their campaign with an informational meeting for townspeople. The Board will follow-up the meeting with a series of press releases in local newspapers outlining key issues.

The SAU will be applying for State funding to help with the cost of construction.

Representative Brien Ward who was in attendance for the meeting, said state funding will be guaranteed until June 30 of next year and to expect changes after this date, adding, the town is "under the gun to get it done." The Board will also be investigating interest free loans. Ward stated the town has a good chance of qualifying, but much depends on the outcome of the March vote in order to proceed and benefit in 2010, saying, "an affirmative vote will allow for even better economic opportunity."

After review of the budget, Vice Chair Art Tighe raised the question about a possible end-of-year surplus. By his calculations, the district is approximately $680,000 under budget. Administrators in the Superintendent's office refuted this stating only a two percent difference in last year's actual numbers exist compared with this year. Tighe requested the Superintendent's office look into this matter and report its finding to the Board. Last year's budget was half a million dollars under budget and the Board was in agreement the budget needs to more accurately reflect the needs of the district.

Salmon Press
Martin Lord Osman
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