Following last night’s public hearing on Timberlane’s proposed 2017-18 operating budget, the school budget committee held a special meeting. This special meeting is conducted every year and usually involves the budget committee voting on its recommendations on the warrant articles going forward to Deliberative Session.
Last night was different. Very different. TRSD Budget Committee Chariman Lee Dube has informed Arthur Green via email, that the budget committee cut $200,000 from the proposed budget last night at their special meeting. I do not know any more details than that.
During last night’s public hearing, Mr. Dube suggested this might happen so he was questioned about the procedural implications. District counsel, James O’Shaughnessy, explained that the budget can be reduced between Public Hearing and Deliberative Session but no new purposes or appropriations can be made without another Public Hearing. For the curious, the relevant RSA is below.
RSA 32:5 in part: II. All purposes and amounts of appropriations to be included in the budget or special warrant articles shall be disclosed or discussed at the final hearing. The governing body or budget committee shall not thereafter insert, in any budget column or special warrant article, an additional amount or purpose of appropriation which was not disclosed or discussed at that hearing, without first holding one or more public hearings on supplemental budget requests for town or district expenditures.
Because the special meeting wasn’t televised, we await a new budget draft and publication of the meeting minutes to learn the full details. Thank you to Mr. Dube for letting us know. He conducted a good public hearing last night and would make a fine district moderator should he wish in future to hold a different public office in the district.