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Hammondsport school spending is up .3 percent

HAMMONDSPORT—The Hammondsport Central School District has proposed the 2009-10 budget.
Overall spending has increased .3 percent from last year; $12,033,852 to $12,072,349.  According to Superintendent Kyle Bower, the overall tax levy has decreased .12 percent.  The estimated tax levy is $7,420,979, down $9,117 from the current school budget.  Bower pointed out individual school tax bills will vary depending on reassessment, equalization rates and changes in the STAR exemption amount.
Also part of the proposed budget is the establishment of a Capital Reserve Fund for future construction projects at the Main Street school.  According to Bower, there are two major infrastructure projects that will need to handled soon.
Another part of the budget is the purchase of three new school buses.  Bower said it will not have an impact on the tax levy next year because the purchases are part of a three year plan to replace the bus fleet.  This is the second year.
The cost for student instruction is up $46,815.  For the 2008-09 budget it was $5,674,572, for the proposed budget it is $5,721,387.  Employee benefits went down $40,469; from $3,357,140 to $3,316,672.
The expenditures are divided between the administrative, program and capital budgets.  The administrative budget went up from $1,174,780 to $1,178,451.  Of that, Bower’s salary is $110,000 with $17,080 in benefits.  Supplies and salaries for principals and secretaries, and the BOCES labor relations consultant and services are two areas that saw increases.  The labor relations cost went up from $8,000 to $29,058.  The increase is due to the costs of upcoming negotiations with three bargaining units.
The program portion of the budget went up from $8,768,677 to $8,792,172.  The only areas that saw decreases were instructional salaries, the cost for occupational students to attend BOCES, and transportation.  The decrease in transportation (not including the bus garage) was because of eliminated bus runs and a reduction in transportation staffing.  This part of transportation costs went from $521,447 to $497,118.
The capital budget increased from $2,090,395 to $2,101,726.  The only increases were for cleaner and maintenance salaries and supplies.
The vote on the school budget is Tuesday, May 19 from noon to 8 p.m. in the Main Street school lobby. 

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