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Brocton School officials propose slight tax decrease

March 26, 2015
By GREG FOX - , Westfield Republican

BROCTON - A slight tax decrease is being factored into the 2015-16 budget proposal for the Brocton Central School District, which the board of education will soon vote on.

Superintendent John Hertlein announced at Wednesday's board meeting that little has changed since the last budget draft due to a continuing lack of state aid numbers from the state government in Albany. Hertlein explained that while spending may potentially increase by $281,000 (1.7 percent) next year, thus putting expenses at about $16,835,000, the tax levy may decrease by about $56,500, or 1.25 percent, to around $4,495,000.

"This is a good budget year for us," he remarked. "Our spending is going up a bit, but we will still be able to lower taxes. A lot of that has to do with salaries going down by 1.8 percent next year as a result of retirements and negotiations."

Both Teachers and Employees retirement systems' employer rates are projected to decline 4.27 percent and 1.9 percent, respectively. Health insurance expenses in Brocton are proposed to increase 13.9 percent in large part due to the addition of health insurance for teacher aides.

Hertlein added that money is being allocated from reserve accounts after assuming basic state aid to be flat for next year. Less reserve funds are being used when compared to the current year, he said.

Once the aid numbers finally come through, some reserve money will be swapped out for the state aid increases, if any.

The spending increase, Hertlein said, includes a $120,000 bus. No staff reductions are being proposed.

School officials are anticipating a final copy of the budget draft for board members by the April 15 meeting.

Also during the meeting, the board approved the creation of a building maintenance mechanic position.

An elementary summer reading program for the month of July was approved. Costs are not to exceed $7,000.

Two intermunicipal agreements were approved: one with Fredonia Central School for transportation to and from St. Mary's School for the Deaf in Buffalo and the other with Westfield Academy and Central School for sharing sports and clubs, including football, soccer, volleyball, bowling, track and skiing.

A monetary donation of $650 was accepted from the Brocton Booster Club for the purpose of purchasing a softball pitching machine for the school.

A tentative contract for Business Administrator Betty DeLand was approved for the current school year.



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