Friday, February 8, 2008 
D'Allesandro decries absent voters

Goffstown News Correspondent

GOFFSTOWN - For the most part, the only noise coming out of the Goffstown High School auditorium during the school district deliberative session came during a musical performance, as the meeting went by quickly without any debate.

After the high school’s theater group sang the national anthem and the opening scene from their upcoming performance of “Beauty and the Beast,” school officials did introductions before reading through the four warrant articles that will be on this year’s ballot.

With no debate, Goffstown officials went through the articles in about 15 minutes, with the entire meeting over in less than an hour. No changes were made to any of the articles, and they will go on the March 11 ballot as originally written.

The first article announced positions open in the upcoming election for three School Board members for three years and one school district treasurer for one year.

A second article will ask voters to approve $816,000 to begin the first phase of the upgrade and expansion of Bartlett Elementary School, although there will be no tax impact because the project will be paid for from the Capital Reserve Fund and school impact fees.

The second phase of the Bartlett renovations make up Article 3, although again there would be no tax impact if it is approved. The $300,000 of phase two construction on Bartlett Elementary would be paid for out of the year-end undesignated fund balance.

Finally, the fourth warrant article is the operating budget, set at a proposed $34,822,651, with a default budget proposed at $34,566,080.

“We are looking to keep the increase minimal, while ensuring that our children receive the proper education,” said School Board Chairman Keith Allard.

Following the discussion of the four articles, Finance Committee Chairman Lou D’Allesandro addressed those in attendance. The crowd did not include more than a handful of community members, as the 20 members of the audience were mostly school administrators or Budget Committee members.

“It’s discouraging that there aren’t more voters here,” said D’Allesandro. “We just discussed $34 million, and that’s not chump change. There should be more people to see those they voted onto the board. We have to get the public civicly engaged. It’s your money being spent, and your children in the school.”

Reproduced by the Goffstown Residents Association.


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