NORFOLK — Norwood-Norfolk Central School Superintendent James M. Cruikshank says that, thanks to the state fully funding foundation aid, they’re able to offer voters a budget with no tax levy increase while maintaining the tax cap formula for the sixth consecutive year.
The 2023-24 budget proposal is for $28,848,942, an increase of $2,875,535, or 11.07%, from the current $25,973,407.
“This will be the sixth year in a row that we will have the same levy. We’re able to do this because New York state has finally committed to their constitutional responsibility to fund public schools,” Mr. Cruikshank said.
He said the district receives more than 73% of its revenue from the state, so the state’s commitment to fully fund foundation aid will enable them to continue enhancing the district’s programming.
“As a traditionally underfunded school district that is 70% funded by the state, we welcome this three-year plan to phase in aid. These funds will have a tremendous impact on our children and their educational programs,” Mr. Cruikshank said.
A second proposition on the ballot asks voters to approve spending $640,000 for four student transportation vehicles, which would allow the district to maintain its bus replacement schedule.
“Typically, we would bond (finance) this purchase, but last year we established a reserve fund for this purpose, saving finance fees. This purchase will enable us to remain on our bus replacement schedule which maximizes trade-in values, reduces maintenance costs, and improves student safety. We also receive 90% aid on bus purchases,” Mr. Cruikshank said.
They’re also asking voters for permission to establish a new vehicle reserve fund, which would allow them to purchase buses through the 2032-33 school year. The fund would be for a 10-year term in an amount not to exceed $3 million.
“This fund will likely be funded by the aid received on bus purchases. Because we will no longer need to finance bus purchases and won’t have those pesky monthly payments, the aid we receive will go directly into this fund which will fund future bus purchases,” he said.
The district also wants to create a reserve for future capital projects.
“We’ve made several improvements in the past decade, but we need to be prepared for future issues with our building and campus. This fund will prepare us for future projects so we won’t have to borrow as much money,” Mr. Cruikshank said.
Three candidates are running for three seats on the board of education. They are Heaven Simons, Amy LaCroix and Marela Fiacco.
Voting will be held from 12:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday in the district board room.
As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
Thank you Governor Kathy Hochul and the State Legistlature for finally fully fuding foundation aide. This is a step in the right direction for NYS public education.
Welcome to the discussion.
Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.