School Budget Updates 3-7-2024


School Budget Updates 3-7-2024

March 15, 2024

Proposition would allow WVCSD to purchase five buses with no additional taxes

WARWICK, NY – Friday, March 8, 2024 – Voters will consider a second proposition on May 21 during the budget vote to purchase five buses for the Transportation Department at a maximum cost of $780,000. The District would use $280,000 of its bus reserve fund to help offset the cost. Of the total cost, $506,220, or 64.9%, would return to the District in state transportation aid. Therefore, no additional taxes would be needed to purchase the buses at a net cost of approximately $274,000.

The proposed purchase includes two 65-passenger propane buses and two 65-passenger gas buses and one seven-passenger SUV.

Assistant Superintendent for Business Timothy Holmes and Supervisor of Transportation Laura Schneider presented to the Board of Education on March 7 where they explained the need for the proposition.

The district uses a strategy to replace about five buses a year of its 76-vehicle fleet. It is important to follow the district’s bus vehicle replacement plan and replace buses annually that are older and have very high mileage.

Of the buses in the fleet, 34 percent are over 10 years old, 45 percent have over 100,000 miles, and 28 percent have over 150,000 miles. There are currently 15 vehicles that are 15 years old or
older. Buses typically last approximately 13-15 years before repair costs begin to outweigh owning the vehicles, as they suffer from internal engine wear (transmission, head gasket,
pistons and bearings). Plus, older buses increase the likelihood of engine failure or breakdown on the road.

The district buses students over 105 square miles, so it is important to follow the district’s bus vehicle replacement plan and replace buses annually that are older and have very high mileage.

Bus Purchase (maximum cost) $780,000
Reserve $280,000
Net Cost (Financed) $274,000
Transportation Aid (64.9%) $506,220
No Additional Tax Increase $0

WVCSD 2024-25 Budget Update

Warwick Valley Central School District Assistant Superintendent for Business Timothy Holmes provided an update of the 2024-25 school district budget to the Board of Education, saying that
the district is considering a 3.49 percent or $2,323,676 tax levy increase. For the ninth time in the last 12 years, the district would put before voters a proposed tax levy increase that is below the state’s allowable tax cap. The District has never exceeded the tax cap.

The maximum allowable tax cap for the next school year is 3.84 percent, or $2,555,086. A tax levy increase of only 3.49 percent would save taxpayers $231,410.

The district is still waiting for the legislative budget from the state before figuring its final budget proposal. Holmes said driving factors for the increase in the tax levy includes inflation, a decrease in building aid, an increase in debt service, and an increase in BOCES debt service. The district will provide an analysis of 2024-25 expenditures at the Board of Education work session scheduled for 7 p.m., March 21 at the Dorothy C. Wilson Education Center. There will be a public hearing on the proposed budget at 7 p.m., May 9, and the public vote is on May 21.

Orange-Ulster BOCES Administrative Budget proposal

Members of the Orange-Ulster BOCES administrative team – COO Deborah McBride Heppes, Deputy Superintendent Kerri B. Stroka and Assistant Superintendent Mark P. Coleman – came to the Board of Education meeting to present the BOCES proposed Administrative Budget. The Administrative Budget includes an administrative component, such as personnel and related expenses for the OU BOCES Central Administration, as well as rental and capital components.

The proposed Administrative Budget is voted on each year by members of the component school districts’ Boards of Education in April. This year, the administrative component is anticipated to increase 3.59 percent to $8,261,477 and the rental component is expected to decrease 0.2 percent to $711,153. The capital component will be $8,353,513. The OU BOCES Capital Project is a multi-year capital infrastructure improvement project that was approved by voters in 2022 and includes infrastructure improvements and enhancements to new space to improve educational experiences for students.

Warwick Valley’s allocation to BOCES for the 2024-25 school year would be $616,498 in administrative component costs, $53,069 in rental component costs, and $628,557 in capital component costs, for a total of $1,298,124. Combined, the 17 school districts in Orange County will pay a total of $17,326,143 for the BOCES 2024-25 school year.



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