VENTNOR — The school board moved has forward with a $22.5 million budget that does not include an increase in school taxes.
The budget heads to the county superintendent for approval before coming back to the school board for a public hearing April 11. Final approval is scheduled for April 18 at the Board of School Estimates meeting.
Board President James Pacanowski said the $17.7 million tax levy did not increase from the 2017 budget. The budget includes a $21.1 million general fund and a $1.4 million special-revenue fund.
During Thursday's meeting, board member Kim Bassford announced the tuition the district pays to Atlantic City will go down about $1,000 this year, to about $17,000 per student. Bassford is a liaison to the Atlantic City Board of Education, with which Ventnor has a sending and receiving relationship for high school.
“It’s very good for us,” she said.
In addition to the budget, the school board discussed contract negotiations with the district’s three unions.
Pacanowski said the negotiations committee reached a tentative agreement with the Ventnor City Education Association for a three-year contract, and was hopeful to come to agreements with administrators and support staff soon.
“Everybody got a little bit of what they were asking for. Nobody got everything,” he said.
He said the contracts need to be finalized before they can be adopted by the board. All three current contracts are set to expire June 30.
“We are very excited to have settled the tentative agreement,” said VCEA President Gina Perkins, adding it was a goal for the teachers union to do so before the end of the school year.