To the editor:
What the Milton School Board does not want you to know!
Know what you are voting for. Voters need to know and what it actually costs.
The voters of Milton deserve it and expect it from all of our elected officials. The statement on the 2023 Ballot in the Milton School Board Warrant Articles #4,5,6,7, &8, "Shall the Milton School District use unreserved fund balance (surplus) available on July 1, 2023, and appropriate up to the sum of..." is misleading and inappropriate to say the very least.
First of all, the Town of Milton actually pays for the school budget through the general fund. The school bills
the town, on a monthly basis, for its expenditures, and a check is cut to them to cover the expenditures. So, if the school does not spend all of its approved (taxed) operating budget, the money remains in the general
That is identified as an "unassigned fund balance", meaning unappropriated. It is not surplus money. Surplus makes it sound like it is just extra money to use any way they see fit.
Stating it is surplus, it infers there is no tax impact to the town/residents when, in fact, it is unexpended and it remains in the general fund, and it could possibly be used to help offset tax rate hikes. The school doesn't actually return anything to the town.
Money, unexpended from the Town's Operating Budget remains in the General Fund.
It is not identified as "surplus.
The Taxable portion of the FY24 School Operating Budget, $6,876,036, accounts for a tax impact of $13.75/$1K, and the Warrant Articles identified as funded from surplus, totaling $151K,have a tax impact of $0.30. Peg Hurd stated in a Budget Committee meeting that they (School Board) felt that if they wrote the Warrant Articles to be funded by direct taxation and showed the tax impacts for each one, they feared the voters would reject the articles.
All 5 of the School Board members voted yes on each and all of these Warrant Articles.
That is why using the term "surplus" is very misleading.
Three things cannot long be hidden, the Sun, the Moon, and the Truth....
- Les Elder