Silver Creek School District proposes next budget

SILVER CREEK — It’s that time of year again — budget season — and the Silver Creek Central School District has been celebrating in the usual way, with budget workshops and a proposed draft.

“We have prepared this year’s budget with the same process as we have in the past,” Superintendent Todd Crandall told the OBSERVER. “We are committed to being open and transparent with our work. As in the past few years, we have had numerous budget workshops (including two Saturdays), which are open to the public. In the next few weeks we will be presenting to various community organizations such as the senior citizens, towns of Sheridan and Hanover and the village of Silver Creek.”

The proposed budget for the school year of 2017-2018 is $23,143,821. This shows a “budget to budget” decrease of -3.22 percent, and a proposed tax levy of $6,063,494. This is a total tax levy increase of $88,295, which translates to 1.48 percent.

According to the budget presentation, the estimated full value tax rate will be $16.99. The towns of Hanover and Brant are equalized at 90 percent (for a $0.27 increase). For a $60,000 home, that will mean a $16.20 increase; for a $100,000 home, it will be an increase of $27. The town of Sheridan is equalized at 61 percent (for a $.41 increase). That means an increase of $24.60 for a $60,000 home, and a $41 increase for a $100,000 home.

“We are confident that this budget is meeting the needs of the students, while having little to no increase on the overall budget,” Crandall stated.

The district, according to officials, wants to “responsibly” use the fund balance to pay down debt, which will save a lot of money over the next 15 years because borrowing costs (like interest) will be reduced. Also helping are the budget numbers that remained the same or decreased.

“The district required employee retirement contribution rate saw no increase and the required teachers retirement contribution rate actually decreased,” Crandall shared. “Both of these factors translate into no significant cost increases in this budget.”

The proposed budget will be presented at the school board meeting scheduled for April 5 in the high school board room at 7 p.m., at which time officials expect to adopt the plan. Community members are welcome.