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Skaneateles BOE adopts $29.1M spending plan

Budget reductions total $400K since December

— Fiscal responsibility is being touted once again in Skaneateles.

The Skaneateles Central School District Board of Education adopted the proposed $29,140,500 spending plan during the board’s April 17 meeting. The 2012-13 budget is $119,743 more than 2011-12, a mere 0.41 percent increase.

The board agreed upon the proposed tax levy increase of 2.5 percent and the budget was unanimously adopted.

“The school board and administrators have worked very hard the last three years,” said board President Evan Dreyfuss during Tuesday night’s meeting.

Since December, the district has worked to make reductions in the initial budget with the final numbers coming in approximately $400,000 under what was proposed at the end of 2011, according to Dale Bates, assistant superintendent for business and finance.

Bates said he feels good about the 2012-13 budget and was pleased with additional state aid the district is receiving.

“We’re lucky. We didn’t have to cut any jobs,” he said, adding also that programs for the coming year are intact.

The district is slated to receive $324,047 in aid, an increase of 5.41 percent from 2011-12. The budget also includes $90,000 from the fund balance and $400,000 from other reserves.

Recent reductions included changes to amounts budgeted for supplies in all four schools, contractual agreements and reduced costs associated with retirement and healthcare among others equaling another $164,669 savings to bring the total savings to $400,000, Superintendent Phil D’Angelo said.

In a time when other districts are making cuts to programs and staff, Skaneateles has been able to remain steadfast, leaving staff and curriculums relatively untouched during periods of financial downturn.

“We always budget three to five years ahead, so we were preparing for this three years ago,” D’Angelo said.

With an “extremely reasonable tax levy” of 2.5 percent for the 2012-13 budget, he is hopeful things level out and in the future the district won’t have to continue making as many reductions to the spending plan.

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