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June 19, 2013

Tupper Lake, Minerva, Newcomb school budgets pass

(Continued)

“A very decisive vote,” Superintendent Clark “Skip” Hults said.

The first budget had included a tax-levy increase of 24 percent, topping the state limit set at 7.16 percent; the new spending plan’s levy increase is 12.7 percent.

“We reduced $405,000 from the budget, our entire staff took a pay freeze for the 2013-14 school year,” Hults said.

And the people weighed in.

“We had good turnout at all of our meetings.”

The district put out a suggestion box as well.

“One of the things that people said was, ‘You listened to us.’ And they were grateful, I think,” Hults said.

The first budget’s failure was a mandate, he said.

“We listened to that voice, and we made sizable adjustments.”

Voters also OK’d a proposition to spend $50,000 to buy a low-rise, 28-passenger bus, by a vote of 189-60.

That purchase had been part of the first budget.

“This time, we decided we would separate it from the budget, and let the people decide as well,” Hults said.

MINERVA CENTRAL

And voters approved Minerva Central School’s $4.95 million budget with a tally of 183-106.

“I’m glad to report such good news,” Superintendent Timothy Farrell said after the count. 

The new spending plan cut about $150,000 from the $5.1 million proposal that went to voters in May. And its tax-levy increase was pared back to 2.97 from 8.93 percent.

The state cap for this year was 3.97 percent. 

“Our spending is lower than it was last year,” Farrell compared the newly passed budget to the one for 2012-13. “Fortunately, we don’t have to go any further.”

Email Suzanne Moore:smoore@pressrepublican.com

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