Budget and BOE vote on May 16

Eligible residents will vote on a $45.9 million school budget
proposal on Tuesday, May 16, from noon to 9 p.m. in the Liberty
High School gymnasium. The proposed budget includes no increase in
the district’s tax levy.

Voters will also select from five candidates to fill three open
seats on the Liberty Board of Education. Candidates, in the order
they will appear on the ballot, are Robert “Keith” Torrens,
Anthony R. Sinacore, Cindy Prince, Barbara A. Kelly, and Marta
Illing.

The proposed budget is $1,498,160 or 3.4 percent more than the
budget for the current school year. Spending increases are
attributed to contractual salary raises, employee benefits, as
well as the academic needs of a growing middle school and special
needs populations.

The budget proposal reflects the Liberty Board of Education’s goal
to ensure the highest quality of teaching and learning for all
students while maintaining fiscal stability and staying within the
district’s tax levy limit.

The board is proposing no increase in the tax levy – the total
amount of revenue raised through property taxes – through
decreased costs in certain areas, a moderate increase in state aid
and the use of $120,888 in fund balance.

It is the fourth year in a row the tax levy proposed as part of
the Liberty schools budget has been at zero or below.

Liberty will receive an estimated increase of $1,383,048 in state
aid for next year. This aid increase, coupled with lower
retirement costs and careful planning, has allowed Liberty to
propose a plan that adjusts spending to meet needs, preserves
current educational programs and plans for new programs that will
help prepare all students for future success.

“Enrollment in the Liberty Central School District is increasing
with a diverse student population,” said Superintendent Dr.
William Silver. “The district’s number one goal, as outlined by
the Board of Education, is to increase student achievement and the
graduation rate for all students.”

The proposed budget seeks to advance this goal by reallocating
funds to support Focus School improvement plans and through the
addition of 4.4 FTE teachers to support middle school students and
an increasing number of English Language Learners and special
education students.

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