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District News: 2018-19 School Budget

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 Schools benefit more than just their students and staff:
Good schools make good communities.
All are encouraged to become involved in budget development.
Be sure to bookmark and watch this page for updates.

Budget development objective:

“To sustain the fiscal capacity of the school district in order to adequately provide for the programs and services for our students, not only for next year, but for years well into the future.”

Residents approve budget, propositions, elect 2 to board

Schoharie Central School District residents approved the proposed $23,822,954 budget for the 2018-19 school year by 251 to 133, an approval of 65.4%

Schoharie Central School District residents approved, by a vote of 276 to 108, a proposition authorizing the purchase of three passenger school buses at a maximum estimated cost not to exceed $270,000.

They also approved a proposition, by a vote of 269 to 114, authorizing the district to use monies in the district’s capital reserve fund for general improvements, reconstruction, renovations or additions to district buildings.

District residents voted to re-elect William (Bill) Kuehnle to the Board of Education and elect Maureen Bernhardt, as a write-in candidate, for three-year terms that begin on July 1.

Previous budget development news

Residents to elect two to Board of Education

On May 15, residents will vote to fill two seats on the Schoharie Central School District Board of Education for terms running from July 1, 2018 to June 30, 2021. The seats are currently held by Bill Kuehnle, who is running for re-election, and Mark Quandt, who is not running for re-election. Their terms expire June 30, 2018.

Write-in candidates will be accepted, and the seats will be filled by the two candidates receiving the most votes. If there are no write-in votes, the Board may choose to appoint a board member or hold a special election.

Candidate profile:

William (Bill) Keuhnle is seeking his second term on the Board of Education. Kuehnle lives in Schoharie with his wife, Lisa, and children, Nathan and Arrietta, who attend Schoharie Elementary School. Kuehnle holds a Bachelor of Technology degree in wildlife management from SUNY Cobleskill, an Associate in Applied Science degree in fisheries and wildlife technology from SUNY Morrisville, and is a graduate of Little Falls Jr./Sr. High School. Kuehnle is a planner with Middleburgh Telephone Company. He is active in the community as a member of the Knights of Columbus, committee member with the Cub Scouts, and trustee with the Schoharie Free Library.

Residents to vote on proposition allowing use of capital reserve

When district residents go to the polls on May 15, they will be asked to vote on a proposition that would authorize the Schoharie Board of Education to use monies in the district’s capital reserve fund. The total amount of funds used could not exceed the $2.5 million in the reserve.

The capital reserve fund was established after voter approval in May 2017 for the purpose of financing the local share of capital projects for general improvements, reconstruction, renovations or additions to district buildings. Funded items could include site work and acquisition of furnishings, equipment, machinery or apparatus needed for use of the buildings.

Residents to vote on bus purchase proposition

A proposition on the May 15 ballot will ask voters to consider authorizing
the purchase of four replacement school buses—one 66-passenger bus, one
29-passenger van and two small vans—at an overall cost not to exceed $313,041.
If the proposition is approved, the district would receive approximately 73.2 percent of the purchase price in state aid over a five-year period to reduce the cost of borrowing.

The resulting net cost after trade-ins is about $73,750, or $14,750 per year, for each year of the five years of the payments. The school district would also receive state aid on the cost of borrowing to pay for the buses.

The proposed bus purchases are part of an ongoing bus replacement plan designed to ensure students are transported on buses that meet the latest safety standards. The plan also allows the district to trade in or phase out older, high-mileage vehicles to avoid the cost inefficiencies related to keeping them in service.

If the proposition is defeated, the district estimates it would have to spend at least $16,720 (the annual non-aided cost of the installment purchase) during the next two school years to repair or refurbish existing buses to keep them in service.

Such repairs would have to meet New York State Department of Transportation requirements for school bus safety. Subsequent repairs to the buses would also be likely due to high-mileage and body-wear issues, resulting in additional costs. The district’s existing buses would also continue to depreciate in value.

Board adopts proposed budget at April 19 meeting

The Board of Education adopted a $23,822, 954 proposed budget for the 2018-19 school year at their April 19 meeting. The proposed budget would be a 1.74 percent increase over the current year's budget, with negotiated changes to salaries and benefits driving most of the change.

The proposed tax levy increase of $112,894 falls within the district's state-mandated 1.35 percent tax levy limit, requiring approval by a simple majority of voters (50 percent plus one). The district will receive a school aid increase of $220,120, or 1.96 percent over the current school year's budget.

The proposed budget would provide additional funding for Regents review summer classes, investment in school music departments and access to new research databases for the library. Funding would also be provided for professional development for teachers in the new state learning standards.

The proposed budget provides funding to maintain Schoharie Central School District’s educational programs and services and reflects input received from local residents. The Board of Education adopted the proposed budget after receiving feedback on local educational priorities during the community budget forum, monthly board meetings and from district residents and staff.

Budget vote, annual meeting and election legal notice

The district publishes a legal notice in the Daily Gazette and Times Journal.

Absentee ballots are available

Absentee ballots are available for those people who are not able to make it to the lobby of the Schoharie Jr./Sr. High School library lobby to vote on the budget (polls are open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.). To request an application or an absentee ballot, email District Clerk Debra Cardella at To download a PDF of the application for an absentee ballot, click here.

Additional state aid helps to balance budget

April 2018: The recently enacted New York State budget allocated an amount of state school aid for Schoharie above the governor's original proposal. The increase will be used to eliminate a forecasted budget gap and fund necessary expenses to enable SCS to continue providing educational programs and services that meet the needs of today's students. Schoharie Central School District Business Administrator Sarah Blood and the Board of Education will discuss a revised tentative budget at the next board meeting and budget work session.

Community members share thoughts on budget

Forum participants at small group discussions

Parent, students, teachers, alumni - all shared their thoughts and ideas with Schoharie Board of Education members and administration at the March 1 Community Budget Forum.

Superintendent Blanchard talks to forum participants

Helpful information

School Budget 101: Balancing the Budget

School boards must develop a balanced school budget proposal for district residents to vote on each May, but what goes into that task? What are a school district's expenses? Where does the money come from? What is fund balance? Read the full article

View a short video

Budget Development Calendar

While certain times of the year see increased budget-related activity, developing a budget that meets the needs of our students and school while also reflecting local residents' input is a yearlong process. As such, the community is welcome and encouraged to participate in this process.

The Budget Development Calendar lists the various steps in the process:

October 2017:

Superintendent and Business Administrator review Budget Planning Handbook and process and meet with administrators

November 2017:

Superintendent and Business Administrator review Enrollment Projections with administrators for allocations for instructional materials

Adminstrators submit Program Goals, Instructional Administrator to Superintendent

December 2017:

Administrators and department supervisors submit Support Staff Personnel requests, with rationale to Business Administrator

Director of Facilities and Transportation Director submit Staffing, Supplies, Equipment and other Expenses for Operations & Maintenance to Business Administrator

Administrators submit Special Maintenance needs submitted to Business Administrator (Routine summer projects, with no budget impact, can be identified until mid-April.)

Administrators submit Instructional Staffing requests, with rationale, to Superintendent

Administrators submit Instructional Equipment requests to Business Administrator

January 2018:

Administrators submit Supplies, Conferences, and Other Expenses to Business

Superintendent and Business Administrator analyze revenue projections and budget requests to assemble Preliminary Budget

Superintendent and Business Administrator have internal meetings with administrators to review requests and make modifications

Jan. 18: Superintendent and Business Administrator present Rollover Budget Scenario to Board of Education

February 2018:

Feb. 15: Superintendent and Business Administrator present Preliminary Budget to Board of Education Business Admin.

March 2018:

March 1: Public Information Session/Community Budget Forum, 7 p.m., elementary cafeteria

Superintendent and Business Administrator review Budget during Board work sessions; present Tentative Budget on March 15

April 2018:
April 19: Target date for Board of Education Adoption of Proposed Budget to be considered by voters in May

Budget Newsletter written and printed for mailing in May

May 2018:

May 8: Public Hearing on Proposed 2018-19 2018 Budget at Board of Education meeting

May 9: Budget Newsletter/Budget Notice distributed to voter households


NOTE: Except for the May 15, 2018, date for the vote by the public, other budget development calendar dates are subject to change.

Information on the current school year's budget

Voters approve 2017-18 budget, propositions, elect two to board

On May 16, 2017, district residents approved a proposed $23,415,819 budget for the 2017-18 school year. They also approved propositions for a capital renovation and reconstruction project, capital reserve fund to cover the local share of the cost of the project using the district's available fund balance, and purchase of four school buses. District residents elected John Florussen and Laraine Gell to fill two open seats on the Board of Education.









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This page is maintained by Schoharie Central School District and the Capital Region BOCES Communications Service according to the web publishing guidelines of Schoharie Central School District. Copyright 2011. All rights reserved. PDF documents on this website can be viewed using Adobe Acrobat Reader, which can be downloaded from Adobe for free. Paper copies of downloadable documents may be requested by calling 518 295-6679.

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