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September 24, 2017
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Stillwater News

Voters to consider $24 million budget on May 17

April 6, 2016 – On May 17, Stillwater Central School District residents will vote on a proposed $23,989,459 budget for the 2016-17 school year. The board of education unanimously adopted the budget proposal at its meeting on Tuesday, April 5.

If voters approve the spending plan, the projected tax levy—the total amount of money a school district can raise through property taxes—would increase by 4.81 percent. This increase remains below Stillwater’s maximum allowable tax levy increase as determined by the state’s tax levy cap formula.

District officials estimate that the school tax rates, which are the amount of taxes residents pay per $1,000 of assessed property value, will increase by less than 2 percent due to growth in the district’s overall property assessments. The district will set final school tax rates in August.

“When we build the budget we focus on the wants and needs of our students,” said Superintendent Dr. Stanley Maziejka. “However, we recognize how important it is to balance those wants and needs with that of our taxpayers.”

The 2016-17 budget proposal increases spending by $277,038, or 1.17 percent, over the current budget. Much of that increase is driven by rising costs associated with employee pensions and benefits, as well as state and federal mandated programs and services.

The proposed budget also calls for new spending to fund increasing an existing part-time business teacher position to full time. This teacher will work with special education students and focus on career development.

Also on May 17, voters will elect three members to the board of education and decide on a $100,000 capital project proposition to repair the HVAC, electrical and plumbing systems at the elementary school, middle school and transportation building. New to the ballot this year, residents will vote on a separate proposition to fund the Stillwater Free Library. Under state education law, funding for the library is collected by the school district and then forwarded to the library.

More budget details are available on the district's budget page, and residents will receive a budget newsletter in early May. Residents are also encouraged to attend the public budget hearing at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, May 3, in the MS/HS library.

Anyone who is a U.S. citizen, at least 18 years old and a resident of the district for at least 30 days prior to May 17 is eligible to vote on the school budget. Voter registration is also required. Stillwater residents who have voted in the general election within the last three years, and who have not changed their residence, are already registered. There will also be a Voter Registration Day held on Tuesday, May 3, from noon to 4 p.m. in the district clerk’s office, 1068 North Hudson Avenue. Proof of identification and residency is required.

Absentee ballot applications will also be available on the district website and in the district clerk’s office in mid-April for those who are unable to vote in person and who meet the requirements for absentee voting. If you have any questions, contact Mary Sgambati, District Clerk, at 373-6100, ext. 30022.

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