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Norwich, CT: 'The city doesn’t have the ability to make that increase'; higher cost of SPED

Mar 15, 2018, Norwich (CT) Bulletin: Norwich education board OKs 9% hike http://www.norwichbulletin.com/news/20180315/norwich-education-board-oks-9-hike The Norwich Board of Education on Thursday night unanimously approved a 2018-19 budget with an increase of almost $7 million — an increase of 9 percent…. The budget, which increases spending by about $6.9 million, will likely face obstacles getting through the City Council, which votes up or down on the entire budget, but can’t make specific cuts. “It’s not going to happen,” Mayor Peter Nystrom said Wednesday of the 9 percent increase. “The city doesn’t have the ability to make that increase. There are legitimate concerns, including the special education costs.” … The biggest increases in the budget are in tuition ($34.23 million, up $4.3 million, which includes special ed increases), salaries ($26 million, up $2.25 million), benefits ($9.57 million, up $948,997). … Strive, which is trying to keep more special ed students in-house, has a proposed cost of $400,000 for a teacher and seven paraeducators. The tuition increases are based on an increase in special education students and the cost to educate them, including at outside facilities — some an hour or more away.