The BC met last night @ 7PM. All members were in attendance and the following actions were taken and points discussed:
1) New Hampshire Municipal Associating Budget Law Training. NHMA provided an overview of budget law for the Committee and reviewed various RSA’s that dictate the laws & process the Budget Committee must follow. The role of the BC includes:
Review current year expenditures
Review proposals, request information
Schedule & hold budget hearings
Forward final proposed budget to governing body
Does not control spending
10% rule in towns with official budget committee
Budget can not surpass YoY increase >10%
In 2017 Litchfield passed a local tax cap on the town side where the budget can not exceed an increase >$175k.
The Superintendent provided the BC with an update on teachers contract.
On 6/27, the School Board held an Emergency meeting and voted to approve a renegotiated collective bargaining agreement with the LEA.
Terms of the new agreement include:
A total 3 year cost of ~$854k. This is a reduction from the failed March 2019 warrant article which was ~$1.1MM.
Year 1 would reflect a 1% Cost of Living (COLA) increase, Year 2 = 1.5% COLA increase, Year 3 = 1.75% COLA increase
Primary renegotiated points to support the decrease in cost are:
Health insurance is more in line with industry standard and shifts from ‘Cadillac Plan’ to a deductible/co-insurance based plan
No make up in step increases to account for past years where there was no contract
Longevity payments have decreased
Next steps are for the Superior Court to review the petition for a Special Election as well as for the Budget Committee to formally vote to recommend/not recommend the contract. The Budget Committee will have a special meeting planned for the evening of Monday August 5th to vote on the LEA ContractThe Superintendents goal is to have the special election at the end of September. Working back from that timeline, there will be a deliberative session planned for early September and the BC vote should be recorded by August 9th.
4) School Update
A review of year end encumbrances were performed. Total encumbrances = $197,593
Estimated fund balance (as of 6/19/19) = $331,845.77
5) Town Update
Two lawn mowers were purchased to replace failing equipment
6) School Capital Planning Committee Update
The BC discussed member participation on the School Capital Planning Committee. While the Committee is very much in favor of the Capital Planning charter and putting together a district wide strategic plan, the BC voted 2-7-0 to not participate in this committee. Reasoning for the failed vote was primarily related to maintaining independence as a Committee as well as how effective one member would be speaking on behalf of the BC, when the BC has not met to discuss.
Note: Any public comments or questions can be addressed to the Budget Committee during the next public meeting, a special meeting to vote on the LEA Teachers contract, planned for August 5th. Budget Committee responses to questions are not permitted via social media.
As shared by Andrew Cutter via Facebook on 6/28/2019.
The Litchfield Board of Selectmen will attend the Budget Committee Meeting on Thursday, June 27, 2019 at 7pm. The meeting will be held at the Town Office Conference Room. The purpose of the meeting is to participate in the Budget Committee Training Workshop conducted by New Hampshire Municipal Association.
Public Meeting Notice Joint Meeting of the Litchfield Board of Selectmen and Budget Committee
The Litchfield Board of Selectmen and Budget Committee will meet at the Litchfield Highway Facility on Monday, June 17, 2019 at 6:00PM. The purpose of the meeting is to tour the facility, equipment and vehicles.
Town of Litchfield PUBLIC HEARING NOTICE Acceptance of Grant Funds
The Litchfield Board of Selectmen will conduct a public hearing on Monday, June 24, 2019 at 6pm at the Town Office Meeting Room, 2 Liberty Way, Litchfield, NH to discuss acceptance of an Emergency Management Performance Grant in the amount of $40,000 for the purchase of Emergency Operation Center equipment. Residents wishing to speak on this matter are invited to attend or residents may send comments by email to:Tbrown@Litchfieldnh.gov or mail to Town of Litchfield, Troy Brown, Town Administrator, 2 Liberty Way, Litchfield, NH 03052.
Board of Selectmen approved the lease agreement for $1,000 per year.
River Access Park Name – John Bryant River Access
The Recreation Commission worked with the Conservation Commission in discussing changing the name of the River Access to John Bryant River Access. Mr. Bryant was a big supporter of recreation and one of the main supporters in getting River Access for Litchfield Residents. In recognition of all the hard work and years of community service, the Board of Selectmen renamed the Litchfield River Access to John Bryant River Access.
Non-Union Performance Review Process
Board of Selectmen approved no more than 3% wage adjustments for outstanding job performance by non-union employees.
Police Chief Recruitment Process
BOS appointed Chairman Webber, Chief O’Brion and Troy Brown to develop and recommend recruitment process.