Jan. 20, 2010
Mohonasen officials are currently reviewing the details of Governor David Paterson’s executive budget and assessing what his proposed $1.1 billion in cuts to education funding mean for the district.
"It looks like we could see a reduction of $1.3 million or more in state aid funding," Superintendent Dr. Kathleen Spring said. "We're still combing through the details, but if Paterson's budget becomes reality, it means a significant cut in funding for next year."
The state budget—and any cuts to education funding—is now in the hands of state legislators and Dr. Spring has already contacted legislators to express concern for the impact these proposed cuts could have on the district's budget. While she will continue conversations with legislators, she is encouraging others to contact them as well.
State aid accounts for almost half of the district’s approximately $42 million budget. Prior to the recession, state aid had generally increased every year to help districts keep pace with the rising costs of running a school system. With the proposal for flat state aid and a gap elimination assessment (which is a large cut on top of the flat aid), combined with continued rising costs, the result is a significant gap between expenses and revenues.
“Given the difficult economic times, the Governor’s budget cuts are not completely unexpected,” Spring said. “Moving forward, we have to continue to be smart, creative and remain sensitive to our community. Making up for this cut in revenue with taxpayer dollars won’t be an option for us.”
Through the years, Mohonasen has prided itself on careful and conservative financial planning. If by nothing else, this is proven by the fact that the district’s per pupil expenditure is consistently among the lowest in the state.
District officials have already begun the planning process for the 2010-2011 budget, which will go before voters in May.
“Just like last year, we will be looking for ways to contain costs and trim our budget in ways that will have a minimal impact on students and staff,” said Spring. “Because of these potential cuts in state aid, meeting this goal will be difficult. However, it is the challenge we face as we move forward.”
Last year, voters approved a $42.4 million spending plan that represented an approximately one percent budget increase over the prior year – the lowest increase in Mohonasen history.
Senate Majority Leader, Malcolm Smith
909 LOB, Albany, NY 12247
Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver
932 LOB, Albany, NY 12248
Senator Hugh Farley
412 LOB, Albany, NY 12247
Senator Neil Breslin
502 Capitol, Albany, NY 12247
Assemblyman George Amedore
426 LOB, Albany, NY 12248
Assemblyman John McEneny
648 LOB, Albany, NY 12248
Assemblyman Robert Reily
452 LOB, Albany, NY 12248
Learn more about the Governor's budget proposal