BRATTLEBORO—The proposed Brattleboro Union High School District budget for fiscal year 2016 of $27.8 million was approved Tuesday night by perhaps the least-well-attended school budget meeting in recent memory.
Of the 14,174 eligible voters from the district towns of Brattleboro, Vernon, Guilford, Putney, and Dummerson, only 73 were in attendance at the BUHS gym, or 0.5 percent. The budget passed overwhelmingly on a voice vote.
Brattleboro resident Dick DeGray said that he was “very disappointed” that none of the local legislators attended the meeting, given the rising costs of education.
DeGray made a motion to tap into the unreserved fund balance to apply it toward the FY 2016, a move that would have lowered the district school tax rate by a penny. The motion was rejected.
Spending for the high school, Brattleboro Area Middle School, and the Windham County Career Center is down in FY 2016 by more than $160,000, compared to the current budget.
Just the same, the district tax rate is expected to increase in FY 2016, due to Act 60.