The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, October 16, 2009

New BOS committee to tackle long-term funding issues

CPA program questioned

Chair Timothy Hult urged the creation of a Special Committee for Structural Financial Planning at the Board of Selectmen meeting on October 13. The committee would have two primary goals, according to a memo he distributed:

“1. Adjust budgets in light of the significant short-term budget crisis, given current economic conditions and the substantial increase that the town will see in high school expenditures over the next three years.

“2. Begin to adjust budgets in a manner which will be sustainable in the longer term, given the large school capital expenditures which are forthcoming in the next few years.”

Hult proposed membership to include himself and Selectmen John Williams, David Model of the Finance Committee, Town Administrator Tim Goddard, Town Financial Director Larry Barton, and Planning Board Chair David Freedman.

“We really have to prioritize the budget as we absorb expenses of new school facilities,” said Hult referring to the planned Carlisle Public School building project and Concord-Carlisle renovations. He put the long-term annual impact to each town tax bill at between $500 and $1,000.

CPA program

Hult said, “We have to go a little outside the box. We might have to reduce budgets by more than 1-2% for the short-term,” as well as “adjust budgets for the long-term.” As an example he suggested the idea of “not doing CPA.” That would involve the elimination of the 2% tax surcharge that the town voted to set aside annually for community preservation funds. The state initially fully matched the contribution, but in recent difficult economic times the state has reduced the matching grant.

The Selectman unanimously approved the committee formation. After discussion, the board asked that Hult add a member of the town’s school committee immediately, and perhaps a personnel board member eventually. ∆

© 2009 The Carlisle Mosquito