Schools Wrestle With Budgets And Mergers
12/23/10 12:00PM By Steve Zind
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Vermont school boards have come up short in the effort to cut budgets this year. Under Challenges For Change, they were asked to voluntarily cut 23 million dollars statewide, but managed just four million dollars. Now Governor-elect Peter Shumlin says federal stimulus money will be used to help schools avoid cuts in the upcoming year, but he warns it's only a temporary fix and cuts will still need to be found.
We talk with Vermont Education Commissioner Armando Vilaseca about what lies ahead in the effort to control school spending. We also hear from Laura Soares, a long time school board member from Randolph and Daniel French, superintendent of the Bennington-Rutland District about budgets and merger talks.Also, Fletcher Allen Health Care in Burlington is the state's largest hospital, and with approximately 6,000 employees, it's also Vermont's largest private employer. Fletcher Allen recently made two big announcements that will have repercussions around the state: it is proceeding towards an affiliation agreement with Central Vermont Medical Center in Berlin, and it's also selling its outpatient renal dialysis centers. We discuss these developments with Melinda Estes, CEO and President of Fletcher Allen Health Care.