Superintendent seeks 3.24%, half a million for security

Superintendent Deborah Low told the Board of Education Monday night her proposed budget would increase school spending 3.24%, or $2.6 million, to $83.9 million in 2013-14.

Half a million dollars of that increase would be for added security staffing, including $235,000 for adding two new police officers and one of the two additional police cruisers needed for them to get around, moving from building to building throughout the day.

Ms. Low said the police expenses might wind up in the police budget, but she didn’t want the expenses to be overlooked.

The security costs are part of a comprehensive security overhaul effort launched immediately after last month’s mass shooting in a Newtown elementary school.

The increase also includes $215,000 for eight security guards which have already been hired this year but were not in the budget.

Ms. Low said the current year’s security guard costs might require a special appropriation from the Board of Finance.

“We’ll see if we can cover it this year. I’m not real hopeful about that,” Ms. Low said.

Without the security related costs, the increase would be 2.61%.

Read this Thursday’s Ridgefield Press for more.

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