Saturday, February 13, 2010


Friday's Lockport Union Sun and Journal focused on this financial situation which has hit our district...

MIDDLEPORT — Like so many school districts across New York, the Royalton-Hartland School District has some work to do with its 2010-11 budget. With the spending plan in its present form, Roy-Hart officials need to make up about $1 million, thanks in part to a 20 percent cut in state aid.

Superintendent Kevin MacDonald unveiled the first draft of the proposed spending plan to the school board Thursday. As things stand, Roy-Hart’s budget would be $23,127,484, a 1.27 percent decrease from this school year’s budget. Problem is, the anticipated revenue is $22,125,370, a projected gap of $1,002,114. That includes using $300,000 from reserve accounts and keeping the tax levy — the taxpayer’s portion of the budget — the same as this year at about $8 million.

MacDonald said the state aid cut is about 7 percent of Roy-Hart’s budget and works out to about $1,035 less per student.

“This is based on information we have today,” MacDonald said. “There’s our revenue, there’s our problem.”

Roy-Hart would lose $1.5 million in state aid under Gov. David Paterson’s proposed budget, MacDonald said. The reason is that when it was determining how much aid a district gets, the state did not see Roy-Hart as a “high need” district, as it was last year. Business Administrator Kelly Griffith said Roy-Hart was moved up from a high need to a average need district, hence the cut in aid. And that wasn’t because Roy-Hart suddenly became wealthier.

“We realized it wasn’t that Roy-Hart was getting wealthier, we think it was that other districts were doing more poorly, quicker,” Griffith said.

Check out the rest of the article online which continues the budget discussion and looks at the future of the fitness centers at Roy-Hart: