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Voters to decide on $56.6 million budget proposal

May 9, 2016
Tax levy increase of 1.4% below district’s limit; budget focuses on maintaining stability

South Glens Falls Central School District residents will vote Tuesday, May 17, on a proposed $56,590,273 spending plan for the 2016-17 school year. The proposed plan calls for a $1,558,592—or 2.83 percent—increase in spending over the current year’s budget.

If approved, the budget would increase the tax levy by 1.4 percent, which is below the district’s state-imposed tax levy limit of 1.42 percent. While final assessment figures are not available until August, it’s projected that homeowners with an assessment of $100,000 will see their annual taxes increase by about $15. Voters will also elect four members to the board of education and vote on a bus proposition.

District sees increase in state aid

For the 2016-17 school year, SGF is anticipating an increase of $1.3 million in state aid, which helps close the budget gap and minimize the impact on local taxpayers. As part of this aid increase, the district will receive $710,671 toward the restoration of its Gap Elimination Adjustment (GEA), the state’s practice of withholding promised state aid from
districts to address its own deficit.

The aid increase will allow the district to reduce its reliance on the use of reserves and fund balance to preserve programs and services, while staying below the tax levy limit.

“In developing the budget, our primary goal was to maintain the high quality of programs, services and staffing that is available to enhance student learning,” said Superintendent of Schools Michael Patton, Ed.D. “We’re also excited about the opportunity to enhance our classrooms by expanding the use of technology and creating innovative spaces throughout the district.”

Proposed support staff changes
  • Reallocating teacher aide positions to provide more support at Ballard and
    Moreau, with a net reduction of 4.75 hours per school day through attrition.
Proposed academic enhancements
  • Adding one additional teaching position to accommodate elementary enrollment increase.
  • Maintaining the service of a K-6 literacy coach, eliminating the district math coach, and creating a combined middle school AIS/7-12 literacy coach position.
  • Coaches provide extensive curriculum and instructional support to their colleagues and students.
  • Adding a Kindergarten Summer Success class to provide support for 15 incoming kindergarten students.
Proposed instructional technology additions
  • Creating one technology integration specialist position for a teacher on assignment.
  • Completing wiring for the middle school for full wireless coverage; beginning to wire elementary buildings.
  • Issuing Chromebooks to all sixth-graders as part of a 1:1 technology initiative.
  • Creating four 21st century classrooms at the middle school.
  • Adding at least 150 Chromebooks for students at each of the district’s four elementary schools.
  • Expanding Makerspaces in all library media centers.

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