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North Colonie residents approve $79.5M budget

District residents voted Tuesday, May 15 in favor of a $79.5 million budget for the 2007-08 school year by a vote of 1,708 to 792.

Next year's budget will cost a home assessed at $200,000 an additional $4.48 per week in taxes; a home assessed at $150,000 will see an increase of $2.45 per week.

The approved budget is an increase of $1.86 million or 2.4 percent over the current school budget.

The additional $1.86 million will go toward contractual expenses and $808,000 in additional staff for teaching and administrative positions.

Although it is the smallest increase the district has seen in more than 10 years, to offset a continued shift in tax base proportions, the district put up $2.75 million, nearly half of its savings.

As was the case last year, a shift from commercial properties to residential in the town's two-tier tax base system has accounted for a 5.5 percent hike in homestead tax rates for residents, while commercial entities saw a decrease. The town has operated under the system since 1994.

Paula D'Orazio, incumbent board of education member, who ran unopposed in this year's election, secured her seat with 2,014 votes.

Residents of both North Colonie and Maplewood-Colonie Common School districts also voted in favor of further exploring the possible merger of the two districts, a straw poll on this year's ballot. In North Colonie residents voted 1,760 to 710 in favor. Maplewood residents overwhelmingly approved further exploration of the merger, 190 to 27."

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