Windham Southeast School District
Finance Committee Meeting – Wednesday November 4, 2020
5:00pm Via Zoom Meeting
Members: Shaun Murphy – Chairperson, Anne Beekman, Emily Murphy Kaur
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 811 0075 4668
1. Approval of Minutes – March 4, 2020
2. FY22 WSESD Budget Planning Discussion
3. Capital Plan Project Review
4. Approve Warrants and Payrolls
Cc BN for distribution 10.29.20
Note: These proposed minutes should be considered preliminary until they are approved by the board at a future meeting.
WINDHAM SOUTHEAST SCHOOL DISTRICT (WSESD) FINANCE COMMITTEE
WEDNESDAY, MARCH 4, 2020
REGULAR MEETING – 5:00PM
CUSICK CONFERENCE ROOM, WRCC, BRATTLEBORO
WSESD Finance Committee Members Present: Shaun Murphy (SM), Chair; Kristina Naylor, (KN); Emily Murphy Kaur (EMK).
WSESU Administrators Present: Lyle Holiday (Superintendent), Frank Rucker (Finance Director).
Media Present: none
Others Present: Cory Frehsee, Franz Reichsman, Steve Perrin,
CALL TO ORDER
Chair SM called the meeting to order at 5:06pm.
SM added one item to the agenda: a presentation by Cory Frehsee of Stevens & Associates on the Academy School improvement project.
1. APPROVE WARRANTS AND PAYROLLS
The committee reviewed the warrants and payrolls. SM noted the committee reviewed the first batch at the last meeting.
SM asked questions about some of the checks, and Frank Rucker and Steven Perrin provided answers.
Some of the subjects included: pre-K partnerships and equity, costs, and differences between towns; student reimbursements; property management; the ASCD conference; the Academy School project; sports transportation; Title I materials acquisitions; Academy School’s utility shed; Career Center vehicle repairs; district-wide insurance; Putney Central School fuel oil; and support services.
Approval/Ratification of Warrants of February 3, 2020
Warrant No. 1230 in the amount of $ 1,230.00
Warrant No. 1233 in the amount of 106.00
Warrant No. 1234 in the amount of 545.50
Warrant No. 1235 in the amount of 4,112.55
Warrant No. 1239 in the amount of 740,704.10
Warrant No. 1240 in the amount of 3,107.42
Warrant No. 1241 in the amount of 172.48
Approval/Ratification of Warrants of February 10, 2020
Warrant No. 1243 in the amount of $ 1,157.31
Warrant No. 1244 in the amount of 77,537.75
Warrant No. 1245 in the amount of 11,026.48
Warrant No. 1246 in the amount of 99,670.28
Warrant No. 1247 in the amount of 3,959.91
Approval/Ratification of Warrants of February 18, 2020
Warrant No. 1248 in the amount of $ 46,302.75
Warrant No. 1250 in the amount of 4,000.00
Warrant No. 1253 in the amount of 3,472.92
Warrant No. 1254 in the amount of 6,574.00
Warrant No. 1256 in the amount of 237,955.01
Warrant No. 1257 in the amount of 2,560.95
Approval/Ratification of Warrants of February 24, 2020
Warrant No. 1258 in the amount of $ 800.00
Warrant No. 1259 in the amount of 3,763.81
Warrant No. 1260 in the amount of 41,413.05
Warrant No. 1261 in the amount of 300.00
Warrant No. 1264 in the amount of 319,660.47
Warrant No. 1265 in the amount of 1,684.99
January 31, 2020 $1,067,357.96
February 14, 2020 $1,280,666.14
MOTION BY KN TO APPROVE WARRANTS AND PAYROLLS. AB SECONDED. MOTION CARRIED 3-0.
SM noted there will be further opportunity for discussion of the warrants and payroll during the WSESD Board meeting.
II. APPROVE MINUTES
MOTION BY KN TO APPROVE THE MINUTES OF FEBRUARY 5, 2020. AB SECONDED. MOTION CARRIED 3-0.
No amendments or discussion.
[EMK entered the meeting.]
III. PREPARE FOR BUDGET INFORMATION MEETING TO BE HELD 3/10/20
KN introduced Franz Reichsman of the (Brattleboro) Town Finance Committee. The committee sent the WSESD Board a first draft of their recommendations on the WSESD FY21 proposed budget, and Franz will re-send the report soon. SM said the Finance Committee will review it.
KN discussed the likely change in process.
In summary: in previous years, the Town Finance Committee sent its budget recommendations to the District 6 Board. But, now that the district has been disbanded and folded into the consolidated school district, this shouldn’t be the sole responsibility of a Brattleboro committee because it affects the entire district.
KN supported someone outside of the WSESD Board and Finance Committee reviewing the budget, and noted it can improve public confidence in the process.
A discussion ensued on the legality of continuing an outside review, and how this is addressed in town charters and state statutes. SM noted that next year, the WSESD Finance Committee must decide on how to proceed. KN said the town selectboards can appoint someone. Franz said that anyone can write a school report, because who will stop them? But, Franz advised committee members to be mindful of not crossing any boundaries that would violate statute and anger the legislature.
MOTION BY SM FOR THE FINANCE SUBCOMMITTEE TO USE THE BRATTLEBORO REPRESENTATIVE TOWN MEETING FINANCE COMMITTEE MATERIALS, AS PREPARED, THIS YEAR. AB SECONDED. MOTION CARRIED 4-0.
IV. FISCAL YEAR-TO-DATE FINANCIAL STATEMENT REVIEW
Frank Rucker distributed documents on the general ledger for FY20, and the general fund expense report, and discussed their contents to help the committee members understand how to read and analyze financial statements. A discussion ensued on the reports and their details.
V. ACADEMY SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT PROJECT PROPOSAL REVIEW
SM introduced Cory Frehsee from Stevens & Associates, who was there to discuss the Academy School project. Frank noted the bulk of the discussion will happen at the Board meeting, but this item is specifically for the Finance Committee to review the project’s budget.
Cory reviewed items such as energy-efficiency and how it relates to project cost, different energy certifications (LEED, net-zero, Passivhaus) and their associated costs. A question arose about the point of diminishing returns of energy certifications and their costs. Cory said there’s a potential marketing benefit for the project receiving an energy certification. KN advocated for better energy efficiency, regardless of how it’s used for public relations purposes, especially because this project is a school, not a travel destination. KN also noted the relevance of considering the life-cycle of energy-efficiency costs.
EMK asked Cory about whether he and others working on this project had contacted other organizations to learn more about energy-efficient building types, such as pre-fabricated construction.
Cory discussed, and noted that Stevens & Associates does include energy consultants in its projects.
MOTION BY AB TO ADJOURN AT 6PM. EMK SECONDED. MOTION CARRIED 4-0.
Respectfully submitted by Wendy M. Levy from minutes taken by Wendy M. Levy
This represents my understanding of the above dated meeting. If you have any changes, please submit them at the next Finance Committee meeting.