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State cuts put brakes on school budgets

Regional schools' transportation costs become more difficult

Buses wait to pick up students at Tantasqua Regional High School Wednesday. State budget cuts are making transportation an expensive challenge for regional school districts. Shawn Kelley. (click for larger version)
November 04, 2009
Less than a week after Gov. Deval Patrick announced a $352 million cut in state spending, local school districts are already mulling over how to take the financial hit handed down by the state.

The cuts, which were made in order to maintain balance in the state's fiscal 2010 budget, include an $18 million reduction in regional school district transportation.

Tantasqua Regional School District Business Manager Deborah Boyd said that, while the cost to the district created by this cut is going to be a difficult animal to tame, she is grateful for the areas that weren't cut.

"There was an attempt to preserve education programs and local aid so the five communities specifically have seemed to escape any hits to local aid or Ch. 70," Boyd said.

The Tantasqua portion of the $18 million amounts to approximately $220,000 on top of $140,000 in cuts from the State Legislature announced in the summer.

See Friday's Southbridge Evening News for complete coverage of community news.

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