Sachem School Board Adopts 7.49% Budget

Credit Matthew McGevna
Credit Matthew McGevna

At Wednesday's Board of Education meeting held at Samoset Middle School, the board officially adopted its 2013-14 spending plan with a 7.49% tax levy increase.

The total budget for the operating year amounts to $293,041,954, a 0.57 percent increase from this year's plan, according to a release from the district.

With the increase of 7.49%, the district has preserved a number of programs previously on the chopping block, including co-curricular sports, the music program, the G.A.T.E program, kindergarten and it will hold the line on elementary school class sizes. 

“What we’re proposing is a budget that has been revised, reorganized, rethought, cleared, and changed tremendously to where we are able to go out to the community with a proposed budget that restores all cuts or reductions that would have affected students,” Sachem Board of Education President Rob Scavo stated in a release. “We listened to the community and we made changes.”

According to the district's calculations, the 7.49% levy will average out to an extra $484 per year for the average household. The percent levy increase nearly doubles the state-mandated tax cap limit, so in order to pass it will need a 60% super-majority vote, similar to last year. In the event that the budget fails, the board can roll out its tax cap budget of 3.14%, which will see the elimination of programs such as GATE, state minimum requirements for music across the board and half-day kindergarten, for starters. In the event that the tax cap budget fails, the district will go to 0% tax increase and further cuts would include closing two middle schools. 

Residents will vote on the proposed 7.49% budget on Tuesday, May 21. 

Jen Jones April 18, 2013 at 12:28 PM
I think the district did an outstanding job reworking the pile of mess they were left with after the state fleeced us. Programs are in tact, and while it's still a large increase, our district was always careful fiscally and had reserves until the state made them use them up. I hope everyone gets on board, because the effects on our kids if the "backup" budget goes to vote and passes are huge.
Sachem Dad January 30, 2014 at 12:19 PM
Did this get reposted in light of the BOE is getting ready to hear the facility study committee presentation on 02/05/14 for the next budget?
Brian January 30, 2014 at 09:06 PM
Um, what's up with this post? Is this new or old? It is all last year's info, but has a date stamp at the top for this week.
Sachem Dad January 31, 2014 at 12:40 PM
It is old news, there appears to be a glitch. There are articles here and there across all the topics from quite some time going back that have recirculated some how. This one is good though, it will grab the public's attention to the upcoming BOE budget and facility hearings on 02/05/14.


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