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Scanlon proposal would fund rising insurance costs

Posted by Sean Teehan  January 19, 2011 11:48 AM

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Amid concerns about a school budget deficit from rising unemployment insurance costs, Mayor William F. Scanlon, Jr. offered to pay costs that exceed what was expected in that category at Beverly Public Schools.

At a City Council meeting last night, Scanlon put in front of the council an initiative to pay the difference in any variance in what the school system had expected to pay and the actual cost of rising unemployment insurance costs for laid off employees.

"The superintendent was not responsible for the [possible] unemployment insurance" deficit, Scanlon said in a telephone interview this morning.

If approved by the City Council, the money would come from the city's free cash account, according to Scanlon.

Superintendent Marie Galinski, who is serving her first year in the head of schools position, had nothing to do with the prospect of a possible deficit in school finances, Scanlon said.

According to Scanlon, he first heard about Galinski's concerns of a possible school budget deficit at a joint meeting between the School Committee and Student Council a few weeks ago.

"There's concern there may be a deficit," Scanlon said. "We are hopeful that the situation is better than [school officials are] saying it is, but we've got to do some digging around," Scanlon said.

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