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Newton schools superintendent to hold override presentation Jan. 23

The Franklin Elementary School in Newton.Suzanne Kreiter/Globe staff

Newton’s interim school superintendent will hold a budget presentation on Monday that will show how a proposed Proposition 2½ override will impact the city’s school system, according to Mayor Ruthanne Fuller.

Interim Superintendent Kathleen Smith’s budget presentation will be broadcast on NewTV starting at 6:30 p.m. The presentation also is scheduled to be streamed online at zoom.us/j/390017072.

In October, Fuller announced a proposal for a nearly $15 million tax increase that would support schools, senior services, parks and infrastructure, plus a pair of school building projects.

The Proposition 2½ override, if passed by a citywide vote March 14, would raise $9.175 million for services across Newton, including $4.5 million for the schools’ operating budget, according to Fuller.

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The additional money would help fund academic programs, student mental health services, and more learning technology in schools.

Fuller also is asking voters to approve a total of $5.8 million in annual bonding for a pair of debt exclusions — property tax increases that last as long as it takes to pay off the loans — to help fund building projects at the Countryside and Franklin elementary schools.

The bonding for the debt exclusions is expected to remain on Newton’s books for 30 years.

Smith and her team are preparing two versions of the schools’ budget for next year, according to Fuller, who serves on Newton’s School Committee.

“One will show the impact of providing the $4.5 million that will be available to NPS if the override passes, and the other will show the impact to the Newton Public Schools if the override fails,” Fuller said.

Smith, in a separate statement to families, said the parent-teacher organizations at each of Newton’s public schools also will be sponsoring information sessions about the potential funding.

“I encourage you to attend a session at your own school or at a nearby school to learn more. As student needs evolve and we continue to address the impact of the pandemic, it is critical to have the right resources in place to support our students,” Smith said.

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If all three tax increase proposals are approved by voters, Fuller said their full effect on local property tax bills will not be seen immediately.

The override would go into effect July 1 and will add $290 to the tax bill of a single-family home assessed at the city’s median value of of $1.2 million. Another $183 will be added over the next seven years as bonding is put in place for the Countryside and Franklin projects, she has said.

Newton residents can find more information about the override at newtonma.gov/government/mayor-fuller/override, and send their questions about the proposed tax increase to override@newtonma.gov.


John Hilliard can be reached at john.hilliard@globe.com.