2012 Connecticut General Statutes
Title 10 - Education and Culture
Chapter 164 - Educational Opportunities
Section 10-51 - Fiscal year. Budget. Payments by member towns; adjustments to payments. Investment of funds. Temporary borrowing. Reserve funds.
(a) The fiscal year of a regional school district shall be July first to June thirtieth. Except as otherwise provided in this subsection, not less than two weeks before the annual meeting held pursuant to section 10-47, the board shall hold a public district meeting to present a proposed budget for the next fiscal year. Any person may recommend the inclusion or deletion of expenditures at such time. After the public hearing, the board shall prepare an annual budget for the next fiscal year, make available on request copies thereof and deliver a reasonable number to the town clerk of each of the towns in the district at least five days before the annual meeting. At the annual meeting on the first Monday in May, the board shall present a budget which includes a statement of (1) estimated receipts and expenditures for the next fiscal year, (2) estimated receipts and expenditures for the current fiscal year, (3) estimated surplus or deficit in operating funds at the end of the current fiscal year, (4) bonded or other debt, (5) estimated per pupil expenditure for the current and for the next fiscal year, and (6) such other information as is necessary in the opinion of the board. Persons present and eligible to vote under section 7-6 may accept or reject the proposed budget except as provided below. No person who is eligible to vote in more than one town in the regional school district is eligible to cast more than one vote on any issue considered at a regional school district meeting or referendum held pursuant to this section. Any person who violates this section by fraudulently casting more than one vote or ballot per issue shall be fined not less than three hundred dollars or more than five hundred dollars and shall be imprisoned not less than one year or more than two years and shall be disenfranchised. The regional board of education may, in the call to the meeting, designate that the vote on the motion to adopt the budget shall be by paper ballots at the district meeting held on the budget or by a “yes” or “no” vote on the voting tabulators in each of the member towns on the day following the district meeting. If submitted to a vote by voting tabulator, questions may be included on the ballot for persons voting “no” to indicate whether the budget is too high or too low, provided the vote on such questions shall be for advisory purposes only and not binding upon the board. Two hundred or more persons qualified to vote in any regional district meeting called to adopt a budget may petition the regional board, in writing, at least three days prior to such meeting, requesting that any item or items on the call of such meeting be submitted to the persons qualified to vote in the meeting for a vote by paper ballot or on the voting tabulators in each of the member towns on the day following the district meeting and in accordance with the appropriate procedures provided in section 7-7. If a majority of such persons voting reject the budget, the board shall, within four weeks thereafter and upon notice of not less than one week, call a district meeting to consider the same or an amended budget. Such meetings shall be convened at such intervals until a budget is approved. If the budget is not approved before the beginning of a fiscal year, the disbursing officer for each member town, or the designee of such officer, shall make necessary expenditures to such district in amounts equal to the total of the town’s appropriation to the district for the previous year and the town’s proportionate share in any increment in debt service over the previous fiscal year, pursuant to section 7-405 until the budget is approved. The town shall receive credit for such expenditures once the budget is approved for the fiscal year. After the budget is approved, the board shall estimate the share of the net expenses to be paid by each member town in accordance with subsection (b) of this section and notify the treasurer thereof. With respect to adoption of a budget for the period from the organization of the board to the beginning of the first full fiscal year, the board may use the above procedure at any time within such period. If the board needs to submit a supplementary budget, the general procedure specified in this section shall be used.
(b) For the purposes of this section, “net expenses” means estimated expenditures, including estimated capital expenditures, less estimated receipts as presented in a regional school district budget. On the date or dates fixed by the board, each town in the district shall pay a share of the cost of capital outlay, including costs for school building projects under chapter 173, and current expenditures necessary for the operation of the district. The board shall determine the amount to be paid by each member town. Such amount shall bear the same ratio to the net expenses of the district as the number of pupils resident in such town in average daily membership in the regional school district during the preceding school year bears to the total number of such pupils in all the member towns, provided that the board may recalculate such amount based on the number of pupils in average daily membership in the regional school district for the current school year and may adjust each member town’s payment to the regional school district for the following fiscal year by the difference between the last such payment and the recalculated amount. Until the regional school district has been in operation for one year, such amounts shall be based on the average daily membership of pupils in like grades from each of such towns at any school at which children were in attendance at the expense of such towns during the preceding school year.
(c) The board shall deposit or invest temporarily any funds which are not needed immediately for the operation of the school district as permitted in section 7-400 or 7-402. Any income derived from such deposits or investments shall be used at least semiannually to reduce the net expenses. The board shall use any budget appropriation which has not been expended by the end of the fiscal year to reduce the net expenses of the district for the following fiscal year. The board may borrow funds temporarily and issue notes or other obligations, and pay interest thereon, in anticipation of payments to be made to it by a member town or the state, for the operation of its schools. Such notes or obligations shall be authorized by resolution of the board, and shall be general obligations of the regional school district and its member towns. The date, maturity, interest rate, form, manner of sale and other terms of such notes or other obligations shall be determined by the board or any officer or body to whom the board delegates authority to make such determinations. Such notes may be renewed from time to time, provided all such notes shall mature and be payable no later than the end of the fiscal year during which such member town or state payments are payable.
(d) (1) Prior to June 7, 2006, upon the recommendation and the approval of a majority of members on the board, a regional board of education may create a reserve fund to finance a specific capital improvement or the acquisition of any specific piece of equipment. Such fund shall thereafter be termed “reserve fund for specific capital improvements or equipment purchases”. No annual appropriation to such fund shall exceed one per cent of the annual district budget. Appropriations to such fund shall be included in the share of net expenses to be paid by each member town until the fund established pursuant to this subdivision is discontinued. The board shall annually submit a complete and detailed report of the condition of such fund to the member towns. Such fund may be discontinued, after recommendation by the board and approval by the board, and any amounts held in the fund shall be transferred to the general fund of the district.
(2) On and after June 7, 2006, a regional board of education, by a majority vote of its members, may create a reserve fund for capital and nonrecurring expenditures. Such fund shall thereafter be termed “reserve fund for capital and nonrecurring expenditures”. The aggregate amount of annual and supplemental appropriations by a district to such fund shall not exceed one per cent of the annual district budget for such fiscal year. Annual appropriations to such fund shall be included in the share of net expenses to be paid by each member town. Supplemental appropriations to such fund may be made from estimated fiscal year end surplus in operating funds. Interest and investment earnings received with respect to amounts held in the fund shall be credited to such fund. The board shall annually submit a complete and detailed report of the condition of such fund to the member towns. Upon the recommendation and approval by the regional board of education, any part or the whole of such fund may be used for capital and nonrecurring expenditures, but such use shall be restricted to the funding of all or part of the planning, construction, reconstruction or acquisition of any specific capital improvement or the acquisition of any specific item of equipment. Upon the approval of any such expenditure an appropriation shall be set up, plainly designated for the project or acquisition for which it has been authorized, and such unexpended appropriation may be continued until such project or acquisition is completed. Any unexpended portion of such appropriation remaining after such completion shall revert to said fund. If any authorized appropriation is set up pursuant to the provisions of this subsection and through unforeseen circumstances the completion of the project or acquisition for which such appropriation has been designated is impossible to attain the board, by a majority vote of its members, may terminate such appropriation which then shall no longer be in effect. Such fund may be discontinued, after the recommendation and approval by the regional board of education, and any amounts held in the fund shall be transferred to the general fund of the district.
(1949 Rev., S. 1378; 1951, 1953, S. 906d; 1969, P.A. 698, S. 13; 1971, P.A. 679, S. 3, 4; P.A. 81-188; P.A. 83-82, S. 1, 2; 83-309, S. 1, 2; P.A. 84-255, S. 6, 21; 84-476, S. 1, 2; P.A. 92-262, S. 7, 42; P.A. 93-158, S. 5, 11; P.A. 94-245, S. 20, 46; P.A. 95-282, S. 5, 11; P.A. 96-244, S. 38, 63; P.A. 01-173, S. 9, 67; P.A. 04-117, S. 3; P.A. 06-192, S. 4; P.A. 11-20, S. 1.)
History: 1969 act added Subsec. (a) concerning budget adoption procedure, defined “net expenses” in Subsec. (b) and incorporated former provisions in Subsec. (b) in newly simplified wording and added Subsec. (c) concerning investment of funds and use of proceeds to reduce net expenses; 1971 act expanded voting provisions in Subsec. (a) to include provisions concerning fraudulent voting and voting by machine and amended Subsec. (c) to permit temporary borrowing by board; P.A. 81-188 added proviso in Subsec. (b) re recalculation of town’s payment; P.A. 83-82 and 83-309 amended Subsec. (a) allowing all regional school districts to designate in the call to the meeting that vote on motion to adopt budget shall be by paper ballot or vote on machines where previously only districts comprised of four or more towns could do so; P.A. 84-255 amended Subsec. (a) clarifying that the vote on the motion to adopt the budget shall be by paper ballots at the district meeting held on the budget or by a “yes” or “no” vote on the voting machines in each of the member towns on the day following the district meeting; P.A. 84-476 added new Subsec. (d) re creation of a reserve fund to finance a specific capital improvement or the acquisition of any specific piece of equipment; P.A. 92-262 amended Subsec. (a) to add the provisions concerning a vote by voting machine; P.A. 93-158 amended Subsec. (c) by authorizing board to issue and pay interest on notes and other obligations and adding provision specifying that notes or obligations issued in anticipation of payment shall be obligations of the district and its members, effective June 23, 1993; P.A. 94-245 amended Subsec. (a) to change the time frame for the board to call a district meeting if a budget is rejected from “two” to “four” weeks, effective June 2, 1994; P.A. 95-282 made technical changes in Subsec. (c), effective July 6, 1995, provided “any designation of a depository of public funds of the state or any municipality or regional school district, and any prescription of the method of supervision of the investment and reinvestment of trust funds of a municipality, made in accordance with the applicable provisions of sections 4-33, 7-401, 7-402, 7-403, subsection (c) of section 10-52 or subsection (d) of section 10-56 in effect on or before July 6, 1995, shall remain in effect until rescinded or otherwise modified in accordance with the provisions of public act 95-282” (Revisor’s note: The reference to “section 10-52” appears to be a clerical error since Subsec. (c) of Sec. 10-51 was amended by Sec. 5 of P.A. 95-282); P.A. 96-244 revised effective date section of P.A. 95-282 but without affecting this section; P.A. 01-173 amended Subsec. (b) to redefine “net expenses” to include estimated capital expenditures, and to include costs for school building projects in capital outlay, effective July 1, 2001; P.A. 04-117 amended Subsec. (a) to make a technical change and to authorize necessary expenditures by the disbursing officer for each member town of a regional school district if the budget is not approved before the beginning of a fiscal year, effective July 1, 2004; P.A. 06-192 amended Subsec. (d) by designating existing language as Subdiv. (1) and amending same by allowing for termination of existing reserve fund and by adding new Subdiv. (2) re reserve fund for capital and nonrecurring expenditures, effective June 7, 2006; pursuant to P.A. 11-20, “machine” and “machines” were changed editorially by the Revisors to “tabulator” and “tabulators”, respectively, in Subsec. (a), effective May 24, 2011.
See Sec. 7-380b re issuance of bonds, notes or other obligations authorized before June 23, 1993.
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