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Odessa will increase tax levy 2 percent

ODESSA—The Odessa-Montour school board approved the 2011-12 budget, Wednesday, April 20, which raises the tax levy two percent.
There were around 25 people in the audience, mostly teachers. District residents will have the chance to vote on the budget, and board candidates, Tuesday, May 17. There will be a budget hearing May 3, at 7 p.m. Debra Harrington and Bill Schwenk will also be present as board candidates running for two seats.
Superintendent Jim Frame said the whole budget equals $15,091,756. The budget includes cutting five positions and not filling another 2.5 positions that will be empty. Other specific cuts included JV sports teams, conferences and travel, athletic supplies and transportation supplies (parts, gas, diesel). The cuts totaled $928,582 ($384,349 in supplies and $544,233 in personnel).
After all the cuts, the school board agreed to dip into reserve funds to cover the remaining $268,595 budget gap. When New York state passed its budget, Odessa got $75,000 in restoration aid that went to replenish the money being taken from reserves.
Frame said he understands the concerns expressed by the teachers at the meeting. He added that comparatively, the school is doing pretty well financially.
In other business:
• The school board approved changing the name of the Odessa-Montour Middle/High School as requested by the state education department. The name will be Odessa-Montour Junior/Senior High School.
The next regular school board meeting is Thursday, May 12, at 7 p.m.




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