Tuesday, June 18th - 6:00 AM to 9:00 PM
Board Room - JSHS
Dear Eastport-South Manor Community:
Late afternoon on Friday, May 31, the district was made aware that our voter-approved budget was under review by the New York State Education Department. Upon learning of this information, we immediately contacted NYSED for clarification. At 6 p.m. on Wednesday, June 5, we received official correspondence stating that NYSED had determined our budget vote held on May 21 did not pass as we had originally expected. Because of this, the district will need to hold a budget revote. Our revote will take place on Tuesday, June 18 from 6 a.m.-9 p.m. in the BOE room at the Junior-Senior High School.
As you might expect, this news comes as a bit of a shock to our school system, as we believe we followed state regulations in our voting procedure and tally. Our ballot was drafted in close consultation with our attorney and in such a way that Proposition 2 could only be considered if our main, tax cap-compliant Proposition 1 passed by 60%. So if Proposition 2 failed, then our school district budget (Proposition 1) would require only a simple majority to pass. However, NYSED has informed us that under law, any district that seeks to override its tax cap must obtain voter "supermajorities" of at least 60% on both propositions, even if Proposition 1 does not exceed the cap.
On Tuesday, June 18, community residents will have the opportunity to once again vote on the proposed 2019-20 budget, which carries a tax levy increase of 2.75% and is under the state-mandated tax levy cap. The proposed budget is exactly the same as the original budget put forth on May 21 with the exception of Proposition 2 being dropped from the ballot, meaning there will be only one proposition on the ballot. Therefore, a simple majority (50% plus 1) is needed for approval.
As a reminder, the proposed spending plan allows for the hiring of additional elementary-level teachers, which will address the Board of Education goal to lower class size. We will also address the social-emotional needs of our students with the addition of one psychologist and a social worker. This budget maintains all current academic and co-curricular programs currently in our schools, as well as restores late buses at the High School.
We encourage our residents to join us on Tuesday, June 11, at 6:30 p.m. in the BOE room at the Junior-Senior High School for a public hearing where we will discuss the proposed budget and upcoming vote.
Please do not hesitate to reach out to me at 631-801-3002, or Timothy Laube, Assistant Superintendent for Business and Operations, at 631-801-3001, should you have any questions.
Joseph A. Steimel
Acting Superintendent of Schools
The Eastport-South Manor Central School District will promote and sustain an educational system which is dedicated to academic excellence and the fulfillment of each individual student's potential.
Through an alliance of educators, parents, students and community, the District will provide a supportive, safe, dynamic learning environment and will strive to graduate students of good character who are intellectually, physically and socially developed, and who are as well prepared as possible for their futures.