The Up-Island Regional School District committee Monday certified a fiscal year 2013 budget of almost $8.74 million, a 5.76 percent increase from the previous year, after a debate about how to fund plans for a renovated school kitchen and new school lunch program.
The committee certified the budget after “a lengthy debate,” said Vineyard schools superintendent Jim Weiss, which centered on how much in excess and deficiency funds the district should use to cover the projects. The committee had previously approved $100,000 in excess and deficiency funds but eventually voted to increase that to $190,000, Mr. Weiss said. The budget was certified by a vote of 4-1, with Jeffrey (Skipper) Manter voting no.
Using excess and deficiency funds for the entire project brought the budget’s increase from last year down by 1 percent, Dr. Weiss said.
Heeding calls by a vocal group of parents and community members, the committee voted in December to add to the budget to fund kitchen renovations at the West Tisbury school and take control of the school lunch program, which is currently run by the Chartwells company.