Continued, Conscientious Efforts

Sadly, other than a brief reprieve in gas prices, everything seems to cost more every year, but I take comfort in knowing that Clinton’s Board of Education (BOE) makes a concerted effort to minimize the burden of increasing costs on Clinton’s taxpayers.

Over the past five years, the BOE has eliminated six teaching positions in response to declining enrollment. To ensure that staffing reductions haven’t negatively impacted Clinton’s students, the district has reallocated existing staff to adequately meet students’ needs. In addition, the district reorganized both the Technology Department and special education service model—saving dollars and improving services.

In addition to reducing staff, the district has minimized increases in staffing costs by negotiating tough contracts with all bargaining units, including major insurance plan design changes. Furthermore, the BOE has engaged in efforts to reduce health insurance costs through a regional health collaborative, a group of towns and municipal agencies that pool resources to reap savings.

In order to save money in other areas, the district has gone out to bid for utilities, transportation, and insurance. This bidding process has provided savings in all of these areas. Last, two of Clinton’s schools now have solar panels, demonstrating the district’s commitment to improved energy efficiencies and reduced costs.

I know too many of Clinton’s taxpayers are struggling in these challenging times of fixed incomes and rising costs. The BOE and superintendent clearly recognize and respect these challenges, as seen in their continued, conscientious efforts to reduce costs while continuing to meet the needs of Clinton’s youngest citizens, our children. I strongly encourage Clinton residents to support the proposed Board of Education and town budgets.

Laura Colebank

Published April 22, 2015 –

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