No big changes to Amherst warrants

AMHERST – There were few comments and no major changes made to Amherst School District’s warrant during Thursday night’s deliberative session.

At the session, about 40 registered voters came to discuss each item on the warrant, and then either approve or amend it.

The version of the warrant agreed upon at deliberative session will be voted on in the March 10 general election.

Here is a look at the warrant that will be presented at the election:

>>Town Meeting ‘09<< Operating Budget: The proposed Amherst operating budget is $23.2 millon, roughly $450,000, or 2 percent, over the current budget. It would add about 20 cents to the tax rate, which is 9.66 per $1,000 of property valuation. If the proposed budget fails, the default budget is $23.0 million. No one in the audience commented after the board gave its presentation on the budget. Warrant articles voters will see include: A three-year collective bargaining agreement between the school board and the Amherst Support Staff Association. The increases: FY 2009-10, $51,849; 2010-11, $61,195; 2011-12, $59,600. Tax impact: 3 cents. A 10-year agreement that renegotiates the deal between the Amherst School Board and Mont Vernon, which sends its 7th- and 8th-grade students to the middle school. The new agreement would begin July 1, 2011. Chairman Dwight Brew replied the change needed to be done for "clerical" reasons.