North Colonie to send budget to voters

The North Colonie Central School district adopted its 2010-11, $91.15 million budget at its Monday, April 19 meeting. There will be 17 reductions in positions, according to school officials.

The spending plan is $3.2 million less than when budget talks started, and it calls for a 3.6 percent increase in the tax rate, $4.5 million of reserve spending and 1.17 percent increase in expenditures.

That's lower than we would typically have, said assistant superintendent for business Tom Rybaltowski.

The estimated jump for property tax per $1,000 of assessed value will be from $20.99 to $21. 75, but those numbers will become clearer in August, Rybaltowski said.

Of the positions being eliminated, some will come from retirement and attrition, some will be budgeted positions not filled and some could be layoffs, although "it's too early to tell," Rybaltowski said, how many there will be of each.

Of the 17 positions, five are instructional and 12 are non-instructional.

Ann Foster, the school board's budget committee chairwoman said there were a lot of difficult decisions made, but overall she was satisfied with the process and was proud of the hard work put in by everyone involved.

"We're as satisfied as we can possibly be," she said.

Considering the difficulties going on elsewhere, she said North Colonie came out of the storm as good, if not better, than most other districts.

Rybaltowski said the district is assuming the state will provide a $1.8 million reduction in aid, although a state budget has not been passed as of press time, leaving that number up in the air.

Rybaltowski made a not to thank the public for participating in a number of budget discussions and said a number of the meetings were well attended with as many as 200 residents coming out.

He also reiterated his concerns for the 2011-12 budget which he expects to be harder than next years.

In 2011-12, the district will be shorted an additional $1.2 million of federal aid it received this year.

On Thursday, May 6, there will be a public forum on the budget. Check back at spotlightnews.com or see future issues for the time and place of the meeting.

The South Colonie Central School District was scheduled to discuss their budget on Tuesday, April 20, after The Spotlight has gone to press.


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