The Susquehanna County Career and Technology Center last Wednesday night approved a proposed final budget for 2014-15 in the amount of $5,418,003. Superintendent William Bush said that compared to the current budget of $4,928,841.

He said the change reflected a handful of factors- including increase in medical costs and retirement benefits for employees, an increase in adult programs, particularly the license practical nurse one, and also an increase in building payment for the new SCCTC building opened a couple of years ago.

In its first year, because its enrollment numbers would not yet match up with full enrollment, a full building payment schedule was deferred, and so this year $95,000 of the anticipated increase in costs is attributed to building payment.

As the career center is served by feeder public school districts, its does not affect tax rates. A final budget must be approved by June 30.

Bush said the numbers will be tweaked a little in the next six weeks, but should stay close to what was laid before the board.

Bids were opened Wednesday for the new SCCTC student built house. The first, for excavation, was awarded to Bob Clark and Sons, at $13,163.25. The foundation bid was awarded to Centermoreland Concrete at $20,805.

Bids for supplemental equipment were also accepted, which had previously been submitted in writing after advertisements in local newspapers. Chuck Jacob’s Snap-On Tools, Equipment Manufacturing Corp., and Service Line, Inc., were the three companies whose bids were accepted. No bids were received for about a dozen other items.

According to board secretary Jeannie Rogers, the state gave the career center some monies to be used for additional equipment. The bids accepted by the board totaled $20,512.97. Permission was granted to create a Student Activity Account for the LPN Students.

Included in Alice Davis’s director’s report: a flyer announcing that applications are being accepted for the August 2014 Licensed Practical Nurse Program. The cost of the LPN program is $13,500 per student, which includes tuition, a laptop computer, a stethoscope, texts, software, and uniforms.

It was announced Wednesday that Bush had been recognized for his achievements by the Pennsylvania Association for Rural and Small Schools Conference at Penn State College on Apr. 24.

He will be retiring on June 30 from superintendent positions at both SCCTC and the Elk Lake School District.

School Board director Chuck Place thanked Bush for his years of service, and said he felt that PARSS has been a very beneficial organization.

The Association gave Bush a plaque for the hard work and dedication that he has shown the schools. He is presently the secretary for PARSS.

“His guidance and direction has worked to ensure that all students in the rural PA districts have opportunities and advantages afforded to them,” SCCTC director Davis said.

The SCCTC and Elk Lake School District share a common board of directors, who agree that Bush will be missed, and they wished him well on the next chapter of his life. Board Members and Administration from Elk Lake and SCCTC School District attended the event, including Ken Cuomo, Elk Lake Principal; Davis; and school board members Eric Emmerich, Jack Sible, and Chuck Place.

A change in the 2013-14 school calendar also was approved by the board. The Pennsylvania Department of Education has approved a request for a waiver for snow days submitted by the Elk Lake School District.

Due to the number of inclement weather and snow days that Elk Lake has incurred, PDE will allow the district to use 990 hours for secondary and 900 for elementary instead of the usually required 180 day school year. The last day of school will be June 12.

The last two days of school June 11 and June 12, will have a 10:45 dismissal, as is traditional.

The change in the calendar was approved by the SCCTC school board, and will be voted on at the Elk Lake School Board on Wednesday, May 21.

It was announced that the SCCTC graduation is still on for Thursday, June 12, in the Elk Lake High School auditorium.

Attending the recent PARSS meeting in which SCCTC’s LPN program was lifted up, are, from left, Elk Lake Elementary Principal and incoming superintendent Ken Cuomo, board member Jack Sible, Superintendent William Bush, Board member Chuck Place, SCCTC director Alice Davis, and board member Eric Emmerich.