For the first time in recent memory, the school board budget and election will be held entirely by mail-in vote, due to the pandemic crisis. Ballots have been mailed out, and must be returned with the envelope signed by June 9, 5 p.m.
There are other unique changes in this year’s school budget as well. The School Superintendent has agreed to a salary reduction of 10 per cent, as did the Executive Directors. Administrators have frozen their salaries, and there is another savings in payroll costs due to 11 teachers retiring, and 5 teaching assistants also leaving. Three vacant administrative positions are vacant.
There are four people running for the three school board seats, two incumbents (Andrew Mayo and Amy Stahl) and two people who are running for their first three-year term on the board, Karen Bennett and Stephanie Feehan. Each made statements and their backgrounds are in the May Livonia Central School newsletter
Exact tax increases for individual properties are not yet known, but it is estimated that taxes will go up fifty-six cents per thousand dollars, or about $21.86 per thousand dollars of assessment. The overall increases in taxes that needs to be shared among residents is $709, 473, over last year’s $34 million budget.
And yet, even with the cuts in staffing, there still will be an increase of 2.66% in the tax levy, mainly to cover the cost of projects already entered into, and continuation of most programs. Proposition #2 is for purchase of 2 large busses for which there is 73% state aid available for the purchase. The buses are being bought to replace two old buses that are ten years old, with over 100,000 miles on them each.
The board has worked hard to maintain the program they had before the coronavirus pandemic, but if the budget should not pass, electives in Freshman Transitions Seminars, the school resource officer program and reductions of extracurricular clubs and activities would have to occur. Three teachers and a nurse would be laid off, as well as a CSE Chair/Behavior Specialist position be cut. Modified sports, 4th grade band and chorus, some transportation could be cut as well as more business, science and elementary school positions, bringing the increase to $235,237 instead of $709,473.
In order to vote, you must vote on the mailed-out ballot, or if you did not get one, call 346-4000, ext. 4100 during the week. Ballots must be received by June 9.