Board of Education approves $97.466 million school budget; residents to vote on May 21

The Minisink Valley Board of Education unanimously adopted a $97,466,466 million budget for the 2019-20 school year, which maintains all current student programs and services, at its April 25 meeting.

This budget decreases spending by $2,504,779, or 2.54 percent, from the current year, and includes a 7.97 percent tax levy increase.

The proposed 7.97 percent increase in the tax levy – total amount of money to be raised through property taxes – is above the district’s tax cap calculation of -0.47 percent, as determined by the state’s tax cap law. As a result, the budget must have a 60 percent, plus one, majority to pass.

Also on the ballot is a proposition to purchase 10 school buses for  $1,025,563, as part of the district’s continuing 10-year replacement plan. State transportation aid will fund approximately $779,428, or 76 percent, of the bus purchase costs, over a five-year period., for a net cost of $246,135.

Anticipated bus purchases include five 72-passenger, four 30-passenger, and one 24-passenger bus with a wheelchair lift.

Additionally, residents will elect three members to the Board of Education. There are three incumbent candidates for three, three-year-term seats commencing July 1, 2019, through June 30, 2022. In the order they will appear on the ballot, the candidates are: Thomas Salamone, Joseph Flaherty and William Cooper.

Voters will cast ballots on Tuesday, May 21 from noon to 9 p.m. at two polling locations, depending on their polling district:  The Intermediate School Gym A on the district’s Route 6 campus or Otisville Elementary School.

The annual budget newsletter will be mailed to all residents in early May.  The district’s budget hearing will be held Wednesday, May 8 at 6 p.m. at the Minisink Valley Middle School  auditorium.