Ripley School Finance Committee Yet To Meet

The Ripley Central School District began to heal as Board President Bob Bentley described it after William Caldwell was announced as the new district superintendent during a June board of education meeting.

Following a failed school budget re-vote, Bentley told The Post-Journal the finance committee would meet to discuss which budget areas would be cut to meet the contingency budget.

As of this week, the committee has yet to meet. According to a school official, the board of education and the finance committee will not hold any official financial meetings prior to Caldwell officially beginning his term as superintendent on Monday.

District residents voted down a proposed 2018-19 school budget of $9,219,270 twice, once in May and again in June during a revote after an identical budget was proposed. The district voted down the budget 91 to 90 the first time and 264 to 106 the second time. Now, because district residents disapproved it twice, the district is forced to use a contingency budget that Bentley previously said is $200,000 less than the proposed budget.

Bentley said the district would have to look at cuts to “people in all areas.”

The Ripley Board of Education is set to meet today for its reorganizational meeting.

Caldwell accepted the new superintendent position following the resignation of Lauren Ormsby in February. He acknowledged the current financial situation, but said one of his primary goals was to gain the trust of the community. He emphasized that he will bring an “open-door policy” to the district so that staff and faculty will be able to communicate with the superintendent directly.

“I operate 100 percent on an open-door policy and I intend to continue that,” he said in June. “My door will be open at anytime.”