Patch Poll: Why Do You Think Voters Rejected the Region 14 Budget?

Board of Education Chair Chuck Cosgriff gave three reasons why voters did not support the Region 14 budget.


After the polls closed at the Wednesday, June 6, , Board of Education Chairman Chuck Cosgriff theorized there are three reasons why people voted against the budget.

  1. The vo-ag program
  2. The director of curriculum and instruction
  3. The total percentage increase over last year's budget

See the Patch Poll at the bottom of the article and share your thoughts in the comments section.

Districtwide, the budget failed, 1,210 to 843.

Agriscience Program

"We are examining the vo-ag program," Cosgriff told Patch after the referendum results were announced.

At the Tuesday, June 5, special Board of Education meeting, Cosgriff asked Superintendent Jody Goeler to form a committee to review tuition funding for agriscience and technology centers and make recommendations on actions the board may want to consider concerning inadequate funding for the agriscience program.

He asked that the committee's formation be reported to the board by July.


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Director of Curriculum and Instruction

The director position would cost $153,658. explaining why he felt the position was necessary and most residents who responded in the comments section of that letter felt the position was unnecessary.

The Overall Increase

The rejected budget amount, at $30,817,765, reflected a $571,736 increase, or 1.89 percent, over the 2011-12 budget of $30,246,029.

Cosgriff was not surprised with the referendum outcome.

"Am I surprised? No," he said. "Disappointed? Yes. If the vote passed, I'd take it to mean that the parents and taxpayers are comfortable with what's taking place."

Cosgriff said taxpayers want a lower budget without affecting programs and maintaining what's best for students.

He said the board will likely want to meet as soon as possible and said a meeting may be scheduled for next week.

Lisa June 08, 2012 at 01:45 AM
Mike we are getting less per student for Vo-Ag even the board is saying that. I am not in favor of getting rid if the program , I think we need to get more from the State. How that can be done , I wish I had the answer to that. I pay almost 11 thousand in taxes and can't afford any more . I think we have waste in the system. I also see many teachers in our Region who don't even send there kids here they go to private schools.
Voice of Reason June 08, 2012 at 02:01 AM
Mike, is it? You are coming derailed with your last post here. No need for name-calling and the like. Special Ed may be going a little far but it is a fact that plenty of troubled students come into the Region due to the Ag program. NHS offers a better environment for these kids, if you haven't seen it you aren't paying attention. That being said, it is quite unfair to Region 14 taxpayers to foot the bill for these kids. I don't blame the parents, it just isn't fair. There is no "mechanism" to recoup the cost. The Ag program was initially set up with a set number of enrollments, it is now a factor of several times that number. It also has become like most other programs that are funded by the taxpayer, the taxpayer that has no voice. The entire program is "me, me, me, give me more. I want to look better than the next". Even if there were a "mechanism" it would be taxpayer funded and simply spreading the burden over more folks. None of us would be here discussing this if it weren't for the farmer, however, we should not be subject to more and more unchecked spending and taxation.
Voice of Reason June 08, 2012 at 02:04 AM
To expand a little. Selectman George Hale also has sent his children to private schools, rather than Region 14.
joe_m June 08, 2012 at 12:17 PM
The issue with Vo-Ag is the budget presented by the Region does not have sufficient information on the real cost per student at the high school and the real cost per student for the Vo-Ag program. Please, do not assume that the $15,000 per student cost applies to all students. Let the Region present a factual budget showing the cost per student by building and for regular ed and special ed. Then maybe we can make an informed decision.
Don Sherman June 09, 2012 at 08:18 PM
Do you remember Principal Brockway? He lived in Southbury and would not move to Woodbury because the schools were so bad. And don't forget those immortal words of school board member Linda Bulvanoski: "I think Region 14 has always settled for mediocrity and part of the problem is the residents want us to come to them with a budget so low, it's ridiculous." Spoken like a true union leach. (Oh, Linda! Look here. Another Region 14 graduate too stupid to know the difference in the homonyms "leach" and "leech".)


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