80% of school proposed budget goes to personnel

LANCASTER—The Lancaster school board presented supervisors a proposed $16.3 million budget for the fiscal year starting July 1 during a joint work session March 30.

“This is about as lean as we can get,” said school superintendent Steve Parker. He noted that 80% of the budget goes to personnel, 15% is discretionary and 5% is “…what we have to work with. As we continue, we won’t be able to cut our budget.”

With President Donald Trump making cuts to federal programs, the schools may lose $100,000 in Medicaid benefits, he said.

According to school finance director Whitney Barrack, the budget reflects a 3% increase for teachers, including a step increase and 1% increase.

Supervisor chairman William Lee asked where the teacher salaries fall in comparison with adjoining counties.

“They’re at the top of the lower half on first-year teachers,” replied Parker.

“By mid range, we’ve inched our way up,” added Barrack.

Parker received supervisors’ approval to move forward on recruiting and contracting teachers.

“I want to congratulate you on the budget,” said District 5 supervisor Wally Beauchamp. “It’s an amazing job and it’s appreciated.”

Supervisors scheduled a public hearing on the school budget for 6 p.m. April 20 in the Board Meeting Room of the County Administration Building, 8311 Mary Ball Road.