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March 4, 2013

BCSD examines budgetary factors

BEEKMANTOWN — Though the governor’s budget shows a state-aid increase of about 3 percent for Beekmantown Central School District next school year, that figure is still 11.5 percent less than in 2008-09.

“Some of how the district has absorbed that and made up for it was to spend down the excess fund balance that was on the books back in 2008-09,” School Business Executive Mary LaValley Blaine told the School Board at a recent special meeting held to go over that preliminary information on projected revenues and expenditures.

According to Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s budget, she said, the district expects about $472,000 more in state aid for 2013-14.

For the upcoming budget year, the School Board has approved the allocation of $1,065,000 in fund balance. 

BCSD has not yet determined its state-mandated tax-levy limit, as it is awaiting further information about exclusions to the formula used to calculate that figure.

RISING COSTS

On the expenditures side, Blaine told the board, the district’s Teacher Retirement System contributions are projected to increase by about 4 percent in 2013-14, while Employee Retirement System contributions will rise around 2 percent. 

In addition, she said, Plan A health-insurance premiums are projected to rise 7 percent. 

Plan B premiums, which only cover three employees, aren’t expected to increase.

The district, Blaine said, is also estimating a 10 percent increase in general-property and liability insurance expenses in 2013-14.

IN-HOUSE SERVICES

Champlain Valley Educational Services costs are proposed to increase 2.3 percent; special-education services, 2.9 percent; and CV-TEC services, 3.9 percent. 

In addition, Blaine said, the cost of administrative and capital fees paid by the district to CVES is also expected to go up next school year. 

But Beekmantown Central Superintendent Scott Amo said the district has been spared some additional expenses because it has been providing some of those services internally in recent years. 

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