M-E, CV Budgets Ready for a Vote

By Andrea Michalenicz

April 17, 2012 Updated Apr 17, 2012 at 10:33 AM EDT

(WBNG Binghamton) State funding increases are benefiting districts finalizing their annual budgets.

Maine-Endwell approved a $46.5 million budget tonight.

That's 2.67% lower than last year's spending plan.

Maine-Endwell voters will see a 2.49% tax levy on the Tuesday, May 15 ballot, which is below the district's threshold.

Chenango Valley's $32 million budget is slightly larger than last year's spending plan.

They were also able to remain below the tax cap with a 1.99% tax levy increase.

Leaders in both districts said making the cuts were tough, but the increase in state aid helped to soften the blow.

"It gave us back about $200,000 of additional aid, and that actually helped to keep some of our program in place. We put some toward the future reserve so we wouldn't have to use so much this year," said James Penwell, President of the Chenango Valley School Board. "We divvied it out and used it as best we could."

"Our business department at the high school was going to be eliminated completely," said Jason Van Fossen, Maine-Endwell's Superintendent. "So we were able to restore that program completely because of the state aid restoration and our Board of Education's commitments."

Maine-Endwell originally planned to cut nearly 30 positions, but the restoration of state aid allowed the district to save six positions.

School budget vote day for all districts is May 15.

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