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NLS decides to outsource key position, tech. services

NEW LONDON -- The New London-Spicer School Board agreed Monday to contract with outside entities for two key positions that had previously been held by district employees.

As education budgets get tight, outsourcing jobs is a trend that will only continue as cost-efficient options to access professional services, NLS Superintendent Paul Carlson said.

The board ap-proved a three-year contract with School Management Services to provide all general duties expected of a school district business manager. The district will pay the Rochester-based company $60,000 the first year. By the third year the contract will cost $63,654.

The action was taken after the unexpected resignation last month of the full-time district accountant, who was hired to replace a retired business manager.

The district "had to move very quickly" to fill the position with someone who had the necessary expertise to help the district prepare for the 2010-11 audit and 2011-12 budget, Carlson said.

He told the board he was familiar with the individuals who run the service and had earlier considered using them rather than hiring a district accountant.

The company also provides business management duties to the Litchfield School District and 19 other Minnesota schools.

Under the contract, an employee with the service, Lisa Raiter, who lives in Glencoe, will be at NLS two days a week. However, she will be able to access school financial data remotely and will be available for daily communications. The service includes long-term budget planning as well as management of immediate school business needs.

The school board also approved a one-year contract with Raymond Norton, of Tamray Technologies, to serve as the part-time technology coordinator for NLS.

Hiring Norton, also a technology specialist with the Little Crow Telemedia Network, will help the district bridge a gap following the resignation of their full-time technology coordinator, Carlson said.

He will be on site for eight hours, one day a week, at a cost of $20,800 a year. He'll also be available for emergencies provide remote services. Carlson said the district would have to pay someone at least $60,000 to get the type of expertise Norton will provide NLS.

He said Norton has a "wealth of knowledge" that will help the district prepare for potential technical changes the board hopes to implement if a proposed three-year technology levy is approved by voters in November.

Carolyn Lange

A reporter for more than 30 years, Carolyn Lange covers regional news with the West Central Tribune.

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