How might the school board fix a $23 million hole in next year’s operating budget for Harford County Public Schools? The issue is on the agenda for the Harford County Board of Education Monday, following the news Friday that County Executive David Craig proposed $214.3 million in operating funding for the school system in FY12. The proposed dollar figure is $230,000 more than the county originally funded for this year, but far short of the school board’s requested increase of $23 million. Next year’s tentative salary increases for all HCPS employees are now likely to be renegotiated.
The $23 million increase requested from the county was the lion’s share of the increase in the school board’s FY12 operating budget, with an additional $2.4 million slated to come from the school system’s fund balance next year and no increase expected from the state. Among the budgeted uses of the increase are to hire additional staff for the new Red Pump Elementary School in Bel Air and $15.3 million to fund raises for HCPS employees. The salary increases, which include a 3% cost of living increase for all employees, were previously negotiated with employee bargaining unions and subject to renegotiation based on funding availability.
County funding for HCPS will be finalized by the Harford County Council, which can add to school funding only by taking an equal amount from elsewhere in County Executive Craig’s overall proposed FY12 budget. The council will approve the county budget by May 31, following a series of budget hearings.
State funding is subject to the approval of a statewide budget in the Maryland General Assembly session, which ends on April 11. Harford County Public Schools has anticipated flat state funding in FY12 compared with this year, in the amount of $199.6 million, so any reduction to the final state figure or any shift of teacher pension costs onto the counties would only deepen the budget hole.
Also on the school board’s agenda are recognition of state and regional award-winning athletes in the winter sports season, and a presentation on the proposed 2012-13 school calendar.
Below is the full text of the April 4, 2011 meeting agenda for the Harford County Board of Education:
MEETING OF THE BOARD OF EDUCATION
MONDAY, APRIL 4, 2011
HCPS A. A. ROBERTY BUILDING
102 S. Hickory Avenue, Bel Air, MD 21014
Board Open Session – 6:00 P.M.
Board Closed Session – 6:00 P.M. – Board Executive Conference Room
Board Business Meeting – 7:00 P.M. – Board Room
7:00 P.M. Call to Order – Mark M. Wolkow, President
Quorum Roll Call
Adoption of Agenda
Pledge of Allegiance
*7:05 P.M. Recognition
? Winter 2010-11 HCPS MPSSAA State Winners
*7:20 P.M. General Public Comment
*7:30 P.M. Board Committee Reports and Comments
*7:45 P.M. A. Consent Agenda:
1.) Affirmation of Monthly Contract Awards (Goal 3)
2.) Minutes of Previous Meetings: (Goal 3)
• March 14, 2011 Board Business Meeting
*7:50 P.M. B. Decision on Amendment for FY2012 Board Budget and Approval of Amended
FY2012 Board Budget (Goal 3) Mr. James M. Jewell
*8:10 P.M. C. Proposed 2012-13 HCPS Calendar, Mrs. Teri Kranefeld, (Goal 3)
*8:30P.M. D. Superintendent’s Report
Future Meetings Review
*Times are approximate