The Fulton City School District’s $65.3 million budget received approval from voters Tuesday. The 2013-2014 school budget passed with an unofficial count of 381 to 200 votes.
In addition to the passing of the budget, incumbent board member David Carvey and newcomer Christine Plath were also elected for three year terms. In the unofficial count, Carvey received 489 votes while Plath received 469 votes. Plath will replace Brian Hotaling, whose term expires on June 30. Carvey has already served two years on the board of education.
There was a smaller voter turn out than in years past, but Superintendent Bill Lynch said he is pleased with the outcome and number of voters in favor of the budget. The budget set out what it meant to accomplish.
Since the budget was first introduced, the goal has been to maintain and grow learning opportunities for students of the district. With no staff reductions or cuts to programming, the board feels that this budget achieves that.
Despite a modest tax increase, the 2013-2014 budget relies less on the reserve balance, which puts the district in a positive position for next year, said Lynch.
Since the vote passed, there is no need for the board of education to adopt a contingency budget.
Fulton Superintendent of Schools Bill Lynch outlined some changes made to the 2012 capital project during Tuesday’s Fulton Board of Education meeting.
The total available debt limit for the project is $9.7 million, which means the total cost of the project will be raised from $7.5 million to $8.8 million.
The extra funds means that the district will be able to include all priority one and two items as well as some stage work at the Education Center Auditorium that was removed from the 2007 capital project.
The reason for the change in debt limit available is due to the timing of the 2012 referendum, debt payments during the 2012-2013 year prior to borrowing, and the postponement of BOCES borrowing.
The district will borrow $350,000 from the capital reserve and 97 percent of the capital project work will be paid with state aid. The bump in funds will maximize the amount of work that can to be done, but a contingency is figured into the amount incase something comes up during the construction phase.
“There is more breathing room in this capital project then there as in the 2007 capital project,” said Kathy Nichols.
“By a long shot,” Lynch agreed.
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by William Lynch, Fulton Superintendent of Schools
I am writing to provide our community members with a new update about the changes occurring in our classrooms and schools across the Fulton City School District as we implement the New York State Regents Reform Agenda, which is aligned with the federal Race to the Top Plan.
The New York State Board of Regents has made significant changes in what our students are learning in school and how their learning is assessed.
The goal of the Board of Regents initiative is that upon graduation from high school all of our students will be better prepared for college level course work and they will be ready for a career in the work place.