The proposed spending plan comes in under the tax levy limit and preserves programs and services
PALMYRA — The proposed budget for the Palmyra-Macedon Central School District that will be put to voters Tuesday totals $39.7 million, up 2.7 percent from the current-year spending plan of $38.65 million.
The tax levy to support the budget came in under the state tax cap with a net increase of 2.4 percent. The tax levy is at $18.9 million, compared to $18.3 million in the 2017-18 budget. The increase, as explained in the district budget brochure, is actually up 3.2 percent, but a quarter of that (.08 percent) is the result of commercial property moving back onto the regular tax rolls with the expiration of a long-term payment-in-lieu-of-taxes agreement, so that portion of the school levy will be paid by the commercial property owner.
The school board's priorities in building the budget centered around keeping taxes within the levy limit, which it did by $2,083; preserving programs and services; program improvements; and preserving reserve funds and fund balance.
“The board of education is very proud of the work that Pal-Mac's faculty and staff have done to be sure that our students receive a world-class education experience, despite state school aid cuts totaling more than $59 million over the last 10 years,” board President Sharon Lang wrote in a letter to district neighbors. “A New York state school aid shortfall of $3.3 million will continue into 2018-19, however, the board is able to present a proposal that meets almost all of its budget goals.”
The plan also includes a $100,000 capital outlay project for mechanical improvements at the high school that will be funded almost entirely by state building aid.
By law, school budgets are broken into three components with programming usually the largest. At Pal-Mac, the programming portion of the proposed budget is up from $29.5 million to slightly more than $30 million; administrative, up from $4.2 million to $4.5 million; and capital, up from $4.95 million to $5.2 million.
Pal-Mac has included a per-dollar expenditure showing 72 cents going to salaries and benefits; 13 cents to BOCES services; 5 cents to services, tuition, fees and insurance; 4 cents, debt service, capital outlay and transfers; 3 cents, materials, supplies and books; 2 cents, equipment and school buses; and a penny toward utilities.
The second largest revenue stream comes from state aid, totaling $18.76 million, up from $17.9 million this year.
Also, because a portion of the district is in Wayne County, Pal-Mac will receive $680,000 in county sales tax revenues, down from the 2017-18 allotment of $695,000. Ontario County does not share its sales tax revenues with school districts.
Voters will also be asked to cast ballots for three candidates for three-year terms on the board of education. The only three running are incumbents Bill Toomey; Sharon Lang, board president; and Christine A. Cole.
Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday at the high school, 151 Hyde Parkway, Palmyra, where the 7th and 8th Grade Spring Band concert will start at 7:30 p.m.