By Michael S. Hoey


The Delavan-Darien School District showed signs of financial strength at its July 12 school board meeting. The board put more money toward a newly established building and grounds fund and saved money on a new busing contract.

The board approved setting up a Fund 46 plan and approved a resolution authorizing that plan to save money toward future facility maintenance costs on May 10. The new artificial turf football/soccer field, for example, will need to be replaced in 10-12 years. The new tennis courts and track will also need resurfacing.

President Dave Henriott said at the time one reason the outdoor athletic facilities were in such poor condition was that the district had no plan or money for maintaining them in the past. The plan for Fund 46 is to use it to set aside $58,000 a year over 12 years toward the maintenance costs of the new athletic facilities.

District Administrator Jill Sorbie said the district is currently in a better financial position than expected for this budget year, so the board authorized on July 12 setting aside $100,000 instead of the planned $58,000.

The board also approved a new five-year contract with Dousman Transportation to provide busing for the district. The board agreed to a new contract a year earlier than required because Dousman agreed to increase rates 2.5 percent rather than the 5 percent that was expected.

Dousman also agreed to reduce the number of routes it uses to service the district from 20 to 17. Sorbie said she asked Dousman to sharpen their pencils and find ways to bring costs down, noting the district has a lot of territory in it and many of the bus routes have been operating at 40 to 50 percent capacity. She said the new plan better reflects what the district needs.

The board also conducted its annual review of the district’s strategic plan. One part of the plan requires the district to be fiscally responsible. Sorbie noted the district’s efforts this year at grant writing and soliciting sponsorships from local businesses amounted to over $352,000. The 77 private and business donors will be recognized on a Donor Wall that will be added to the district’s web site.

For more coverage from the meeting, pick up a copy of the July 22 Delavan Enterprise.


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