ID-4 budget passes; low voter turnout

April 16, 2007
By JOHN FLOWERS
MIDDLEBURY — A few dozen Middlebury residents turned out on April 11 to unanimously support all the money items on their ID-4 school district annual meeting warning, including a 2007-2008 Mary Hogan Elementary School spending plan of $5,482,885.
Mary Hogan Elementary Principal Bonnie Bourne said the meeting drew around 25 people, who endorsed all items on the warning by voice vote.
The school budget adopted by voters represented a 2.73 percent increase over the current year’s spending plan of $5,337,045.
Also earning voter approval were three other money-related votes, including a proposal to tap the school’s unreserved fund balance for $72,072 to help pay for a roof replacement project at the school; a plan to use $55,066 from the reserve fund balance to pay off a seven-year loan for a school bus, purchased back in August of 2005; and a request to take $24,743 from the unreserved fund balance and put it in ID-4’s “Education Reserve Fund.”
In other action, voters affirmed their current practice of electing their district moderator, clerk, treasurer and an auditor from the floor, as opposed to by Australian ballot.
ID-4 officials said they were pleased with the results of last week’s votes.
“We’re very grateful that Middlebury continues to support its youngsters in such a fine fashion,” Bourne said.
“We were thrilled to have the unanimous support of the residents who came to meeting and are glad they came out to vote,” said ID-4 board Chairwoman Serena Eddy-Moulton.
While pleased with the results, school officials were disappointed with the small turnout. Middlebury has more than 5,000 registered voters.
“It’s unfortunate,” Bourne said. “I wish more people were there to listen to us explain the budget.”

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