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Third time's the charm for South Colonie school budget

Buhner said the cuts in positions, though mostly being done through attrition and a hiring freeze, are unfortunate, though the district predicted the need to do so early on in the budget process.

"We started freezing positions back in the fall, and we've done some layoffs," Buhner said, adding he did not know the total amount of layoffs that have been proposed, although "some of these people have been excellent employees."

Buhner also wanted to point out that, despite the tough fiscal constraints of this budget year, the district has managed "to do some positive things, including adding full-day Kindergarten" to the district, without the help of State aide.

The district has put together informational letters that it has sent to residents to keep them informed.

"We tried to communicate that we've built a fiscally responsible budget, trying to control what we can, and put together a responsible school budget," said

Buhner.

Buhner is hopeful that voters will vote to pass the budget on Tuesday, May 19.

According to Noetzel, if the budget is not passed, the district may have to move to a contingency budget, and residents of the district will see changes from ways the district buildings have be used in the past.

"There would be some things we can't do," he said, stating that the district would have to charge groups who want to use the district's buildings as per a state law that applies if a district's budget does not pass.

According to Noetzel, right now, the district is nearly $3 million under the contingency, so if the budget did not pass, the district would have to cut even more " approximately $214,000 " in equipment used throughout the district.

At the point where the budget does not pass, the Board of Education could choose to either adopt the contingency budget, or bring the adopted budget to a second vote. If that fails, the district would have to use the contingency budget, Noetzel said.

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