Hampton passes 2012-13 district budget
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The Hampton school board Monday evening unanimously passed the district's budget for the 2012-13 school year without a tax increase and without much discussion.
The difference between $43,033.566 in expenditures and $42,597,496 in revenues will be funded with $151,000 of year two of the district's PSERS stabilization fund and $285,070 from the unassigned fund balance.
Several months of discussions among the board and residents resulted in the no-tax-hike year for Hampton Township residents.
David Gurwin, school board president, stated: "I'm really very glad that we're able to achieve a budget this year without a tax increase."
Board member Gail Litwiler agreed but warned the following years would be fraught with payroll increases to cover retirement costs expected to grow at exponential rates.
In appreciation of the work of Jeffrey Kline, director of administrative services for the district, the board unanimously voted for an amended five-year contract running through June 30, 2017.
Warranting much more discussion at the meeting concluding the 2012 school year was a policy that will directly affect volunteers who chaperone overnight school trips for district sports, clubs and activities.
The first reading of a policy requiring background checks for parents chaperoning overnight trips of school-sponsored activities received a no vote from Mrs. Litwiler, while the other eight school board members voted yes after Patrick Clair, district solicitor assured them they could continue to make changes before the second reading and final vote on the policy.
"I think it's unfortunate," Mrs. Litwiler said, of the need for such a policy. She and several of her board mates voiced concerns of privacy concerns regarding the background checks.
John Hoover, superintendent, assured those gathered that 99 percent of applicants for clearances now (currently only those seeking employment with the district) are approved as having "no record." Those who do not often have some mishap from their past, such as a college drinking violation, that is cleared up with a short discussion. "It's very rare that we've excluded folks," he said.
But the board members want to make sure there is a good, consistent way of evaluating any refusals. Robert Shages said he wanted to be sure the final version of the policy spells out what is done with any information revealed in clearance reports.
The vote took place only after Mr. Clair assured the board: "You can amend this thing as much as you want throughout the process."
Passage was necessary so Hampton administrators can inform teachers, coaches and club sponsors of the need for clearances so there is enough time for volunteers to attain them before school starts Aug. 23.
First Published June 11, 2012 9:51 pm