Scotia-Glenville School District building proposal vote nears

After months of forums and meetings to inform the public about the building proposition for the Scotia-Glenville School District that comes to a vote next week, about 10 residents came before the board with last-minute concerns over the $27.6 million project.

If the proposition is approved by voters, the district will use $935,000 in EXCEL aid from the state to pay for maintenance issues. Taxpayers can expect to see a 1.9 percent tax increase in 2010, which comes out to be about $59 for a home assessed at $160,000. If the proposition is passed, it will then go out to bid before several contractors.

If the proposition is not passed then district still will use the EXCEL aid to address pressing issues, such as replacing the roofs at several schools.

Board President Margaret Smith said at the Monday, Dec. 8, public comment period, the final one before the vote, that she understood the timing of the vote falls amid news of an increasingly troubled economy, but she said that the board has not taken the project lightly.

We could have never expected this to fall in sync with a recession, but even given that, the cost to the taxpayers will stay minimal, and we still need to focus on the future of the district and our students, said Smith.

Resident Armand Canestraro said that many area seniors are already burdened with taxes and cannot afford a tax hike to pay for amenities like artificial turf.

"People are moving because the taxes here are more than we can continue to pay," said Canestraro.

Voting on the proposition will be held Tuesday, Dec. 16, from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. at Scotia-Glenville High School on Scandia Road. Absentee ballots will be accepted until Dec. 16.

In past meetings, residents of a senior housing facility expressed concerns about being able to vote on the proposition. The district will address those worries by providing absentee ballots that can be obtained by calling the school.

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