Spring is upon us and, as always, marks a renewal and a time to plan ahead. As it does every spring, staff has been working diligently to prepare the District’s proposed budget for the 2016-2017 academic year. As of this writing, what is called “the Governor’s run” has been released; this is his recommended budget. The State legislature will propose alterations to that budget, and by April 1, the State should have one agreed-upon budget for the upcoming fiscal year, which runs April 1 to March 31. At that point, school districts will know what to expect in terms of State aid and can then finalize their own proposed budgets to put before the voters in each respective district.
Under the Governor’s proposed budget, our District would receive an increase in aid. Here are the highlights:
- Total State Aid revenue estimates show a net increase of $3,548,992.00, broken down as follows:
The GAP elimination adjustment (GEA) in State Aid is projected to be eliminated. This would increase District aid by $27,562.
- An increase of $1,905,000 in Building Aid is the largest portion of the projected increase.
This money is to be used for our recently completed capital projects: Inventing Tomorrow. District expense-based aids also show a net increase for 2016 – 2017.
- Foundation Aid: This is the largest portion of State Aid received by school districts and has just recently begun to rise and is projected to increase by $1,323,470.
- The Governor has added a new category called Community Schools Aid for high needs schools, such as ours.
We will see how these projections may change after the State legislature proposes amendments to the budget and one final document is approved in Albany. Meanwhile, we continue to strive, as we always have, to impact classrooms last, and to hold the line on the tax levy.
It is important that residents follow the media coverage of the State’s budget and cast an informed vote on the School District’s budget on May 17.
Please note that residents must be registered in order to vote on that day. The last opportunity for those who are not registered to become registered is May 3. If you are uncertain of your status, call our District Clerk at 286-4204. Thank you for supporting our schools...and your children!
Cynthia A. Bianco , Superintendent of Schools