School board sets final budget hearing to fund 2022-23 school year

The Hopewell Valley Regional School District administration building in Pennington.

The Hopewell Valley Regional School District introduced a $95.2 million tentative budget for
the 2022-23 school year that has been unanimously approved by the school board.

The tentative budget will be review by the Mercer County Superintendent of Schools.

A public hearing prior to final budget adoption has been set for April 25 at 7 p.m. at the school district office at 425 S. Main St. in Pennington.

The proposed budget, as introduced at the March 21 school board meeting, calls for an increase in the total property tax levy by 1.3% from $82.2 million to $83.3 million.

While the increase in the general fund tax levy is the full 2% allowable by law, when coupled with a decrease in debt service (due to expiration of a portion of district debt), the overall impact to taxpayers is lowered, according to a district release.

The board has included in the budget funds to address rising costs in energy, special education services, transportation, and employee salaries and benefits.

Additional funds were budgeted to address changes to state mandated standards that will require revisions to the academic program of study.

In addition, the district is planning to implement a new math program and the purchase of new textbooks in several areas, according to the release.

The board has also allocated funds to address several facility issues including HVAC repairs,
replacement of the turf field at Hopewell Valley Central High School and the tennis courts at Timberlane Middle School.

The district’s budget plan will maintain all current district programs, student services, and
facilities in what seems to be a challenging year ahead.