EAST GREENWICH- The annual East Greenwich School Budget process ends in June, but on Monday night during its meeting, the East Greenwich School Committee took an important step forward when it approved its 2021-2022 preliminary budget. 

During the meeting East Greenwich Superintendent Alexis Meyer, announced that the total bottom line number they are asking for from the town is $38,725,802.

Last year’s allocation from the Town was a total of $37,441,266 meaning that this year’s ask is up a total of $1,284,536 or 3.4 percent. 

Meyer also noted during the meeting that after using $586,525 of its fund balance last year to help offset the budget, this year’s budget proposal wouldn’t use any of its fund balance. 

During her proposed budget presentation to the school committee, Meyer gave a breakdown of the different types of expenses. 

Like in essentially every municipal or school district budget, eating up most of the budget is personnel costs. In the budget 58.53 percent would go towards compensation, and 20.9 percent would go towards benefits. This means that a total of 79.43 percent will be spent on personnel. 

Aside from personnel services, the other expenses in the proposed budget include other purchased services at 9.63 percent, 

The total preliminary budget came in at a total of $43,832,155. While the vast majority of the budget appropriation comes from the Town, the district also gets revenue from a vast number of funding sources. The biggest one aside the Town being from State Aid. 

If the budget holds, 88.35 percent of the budget revenue would come from Town Appropriations while 10.11 percent would come from State Aid. 

Before they took a vote on the budget East Greenwich School Committee member Eugene  Quinn noted that last year East Greenwich Town Manager Andy Nota gave them guidance telling them to ask for what they need. 

He asked Meyer if that was the same guidance again this year. 

She said that was the case. 

“Put forward a budget that is responsible and provides for the needs of the district at this time,” Meyer said. 

The Committee ultimately approved the preliminary budget with a vote of 7-0. 

Now that the School Committee has approved its preliminary budget Meyer will submit the budget to Nota for his review.

From there, the school committee and town council will have a joint meeting where they will essentially negotiate any issues. After that, the town council will have a final say of how much money they will appropriate from town funds to the school district. 

Once the town makes its final appropriation, the school committee will then meet again to finalize its budget based on the funds they have available for the upcoming year.

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