Bellefonte school district close to final budget approval

bmilazzo@centredaily.comMay 13, 2014 

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    School gets CPI update

    A representative from Central Pennsylvania Institute of Science & Technology was present at the Bellefonte Area School District board meeting Tuesday and discussed fiscal information regarding the institution.

    David Van Buskirk, director of fiscal affairs, said CPI has paid about $1.1 million toward its Transportation Training Center that opened last fall. The total cost of the facility was about $3.5 million.

    Van Buskirk said Bellefonte would help pay about $1 million toward that cost. CPI serves about 125 students in the district.

    The Transportation Training Center is a state-of the art facility at the institute as part of a three-phase project at CPI. Its next phase will break ground next year with the Health Care Training Center, Van Buskirk said.

    The final phase would be to implement a hospitality program, and expand its culinary and energy programs.

— The Bellefonte Area School District board will vote to approve the final 2014-15 budget June 10 that calls for a nearly $1 million increase from the 2013-14 budget.

The $46.7 million proposed final budget was passed by the board at a meeting April 22 that includes about $13 million in state funding. The rest would come from real estate and income taxes, said Ken Bean, director of fiscal affairs.

This final proposed budget is about $200,000 shy of what was originally predicted in February that Bean said was only a “worst-case scenario plan.”

Within the proposed budget, no programs are expected to be cut, and current programs would be expanded and more would be added.

Superintendent Cheryl Potteiger said those programs would include engineering and language courses, and the possibility of partnering with local universities that give students credit for classes.

At Tuesday’s board meeting, Bean said school lunches also are expected to increase by 5 cents at the primary level and 10 cents in the secondary level. This is to help offset food service costs next year. Its budget is about $179,791, according to the budget report.

Liz Stone, volunteer coordinator, was also honored and awarded for her volunteer work with the district. Stone has spent 13 years volunteering.

At the next meeting, 7 p.m. May 27, members will discuss the proposed track and football field plans that would include a multiyear, multiphase project. The idea is to improve handicap accessibility at the facilities.

Britney Milazzo can be reached at 231-4648. Follow her on Twitter @ M11azzo.

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