Catholic Division board discusses budget matters at regular meeting
With the passing of the provincial budget last week the Prince Albert Catholic School Division board of education had an agenda that was very heavy on budget related matters.
Director of education Lorel Trumier said that the division's budget was what dominated the meeting on Monday evening.
“We kind of joked with (CFO) Greg (McEwen) that it almost became his meeting,” Trumier said. “All of the items that were identified are related to the rhythm of our work, which is the budget, comes down and we need to let our board know where things stand and also make some decisions on some of the pieces.”
The provincial budget includes an allocation of $11.25 million including minor capital renewal projects at St. John Community School. Trumier said that they are still waiting for details to be finalized.
“We still don't know and that's basically what I have indicated to the board last night (Monday),” she explained. “We are so grateful that the Ministry of Education and the provincial budget is going to provide some capital dollars for some minor renovations at St. John Community School. We are excited about it. We just don't know how much and what the conditions are around that too, so we are waiting for that. We are pumped about that, of course we are excited and we are going to do some good work,” Trumier said.
The board also heard about the continuation of targeted support funding for the hiring of educational assistants in the division. The funding will help the school division continue to hire educational assistants.
The division is eligible to receive $137, 532, which is the same as the previous year. This funding will be integrated into the division’s 2023-2024 budget.
The board also heard that the division will receive $173, 328 more than last year, pending the enrolment adjustment on Sept. 30, 2023. The division will also see a decrease in Preventative Maintenance and Renewal (PMR) money of $77, 882.
The division will also be hosting Summer Literacy Camps again this summer with the help of $20,000 of funding included in the 2023 budget.
“The board approved the process of some of the Literacy Camps to occur again so now we will start that process of hiring our teacher and support staff for those camps and identifying dates and times,” Trumier said. Camps will be offered at St. John Community School, St. Catherine Catholic School and St. Michael Community School.
With St. John Community School receiving funding for Minor Capital Renewal the board has also re-submitted Ecole Holy Cross for the 2024-2025 Minor Capital Renewal Program.
The submission for St. John Community School was initially included for 2024-2025 but that changed with it being included in the current budget year.
In 2018, the Catholic Division enacted a bylaw where they can determine its own separate school division tax and set education mill rates. The division is required to pass a resolution each year before April 20 to set their own property tax mill rates.
At the meeting on Monday, the board chose to set their mill rate the same as that of the province. The 2022 provincial mill rate is 1.42 mills for agricultural property, 4.54 for residential property, 6.86 mills for commercial/industrial property and 9.88 mills for resource property.
Michael Oleksyn, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Prince Albert Daily Herald