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Tech Center Gets Newport OK, 717-156

Tax bite, $1.38


By ARCHIE MOUNTAIN

NEWPORT -- On a vote of 717-156, the renovation and addition to the Newport Tech Center at Newport High School won overwhelming support at the annual School District Meeting Tuesday.


The 2022-23 projected budget numbers are expected to add $1.38 per $1,000 to tax bills based on Newport's current town-wide assessment numbers. That would increase the overall tax bill on property assessed for $250,000 by $345.


The 2022-23 Newport School District operating budget was also supported, 626-258, along with the Newport Teachers Association bargaining agreement, 621-261.


Virginia Irwin polled 717 votes to capture the job for school district moderator for one year, succeeding William Howard Dunn who did not seek re-election. Robert Scott, 745 votes, was re-elected School District Treasurer and also was unopposed for School District Clerk, winning that post with 739 votes.


There will be two new School Board members. William Wilkinson, 471 votes, and Steven Morris, 377 votes, led the field. Trailing were Timothy Beard, 356 votes and incumbent Darrell Jones, 278 votes. Veteran Linda Wadensen did not seek re-election.


The Newport School District's operating budget for 2022-23 was approved at $19,768,269. The that budget includes the sum necessary to fund a one-year collective bargaining agreement reached between the Newport School Board and the Newport Support Staff--NSS/NEA, which calls for $98,184 to cover estimated increases in salaries and benefits for 2022-23. The tax impact is listed at 55 cents per $1,000, according to information on the 2022-23 warrant.


Article 4 on the warrant covers the collective bargaining agreement between the Newport School Board and the Newport Teachers Association that will cover increases in salaries and benefits at the current staffing level of $318,281. The tax impact is projected to be 72 cents per $1,000 of property valuation.


Article 2 on the warrant gained voter approval for the renovation and addition to the Career Technical Center.


The School District sought $15,400,000 (gross budget) for renovation and addition to the Career Technical Center with $11,000,000 to come from State Building Aid, $2,160,000 from Federal ESSER funding and $280,000 from private donations or other grants, and authorize the issuance of $1,960,000 for bonds or notes to fund the remaining balance of the gross budget amount.


The School Board will then issue and negotiate such bonds or notes and to determine an additional sum of $49,000 from taxation to pay debt service on those bond notes due in the 2022-23 fiscal year, and authorize the School Board to accept on behalf of the District any federal, state or private funds that may become available for the project.


The tax impact will be 11 cents per $1,000 valuation for fiscal year 2022-23 and 33 cents in future years.


The projected property tax hikes for 2022-23 has been set at


According to Supt. of Schools Brendan Minnihan, plans call for renovation of the spaces for the nine programs currently offered (Animal Sciences, Automotive, Business, Cosmetology, EMT, Engineering, Health Sciences, Natural Resources and Welding. Additionally, new space would be constructed to contain the Animal Sciences and Natural Resources programs.


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