F-M voters approve budget, elect three to school board

— Fayetteville-Manlius residents approved the school district’s $74.6 million 2012-13 budget by a vote of 1,328 to 531 today, while also electing three school board members.

Propositions to purchase four new 71-passenger school buses and one 36-passenger wheelchair bus and to support the Fayetteville Free Library and Manlius Library also passed overwhelmingly.

The elected board members are current board president Marissa Joy Mims (1,361 votes), current board vice President Lisa Lukasiewicz Izant (1,439 votes) and newcomer Rebecca Shiroff (1,329 votes).

Each will serve three-year terms, beginning July 1. Board member Ilene Mendel did not seek re-election.

“We want to thank all of our community members who came out and voted today. Our community’s steadfast support allows us to deliver the educational programs that our students need to compete and be successful in the classroom and beyond,” said Superintendent Corliss Kaiser in a news release. “Throughout the budget process, we looked for ways to reduce what we offer rather than eliminate entire programs and services, knowing that it is easier to build something back up rather than start over. This philosophy helped guide the tough decisions this budget demanded. ”

The 2012-13 tax levy increase of 1.95 percent is below the district’s calculated tax levy limit of 2.81 percent, per the state’s new property tax levy cap law. The law, which has often been referred to inaccurately as a 2-percent cap, requires each school district to calculate its own levy limit based on a complex multi-step formula.

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