Skip To Main Content

Letter to the Community - Governor's Budget

Another Way of Looking at the

Governor’s Executive Budget Proposal

Dear Community Member,

I have several grave concerns for our students and taxpayers regarding the Governor’s Executive Budget proposal.  If the Governor’s proposal becomes the New York State Budget every school district in rural, upstate New York without doubt will be negatively impacted.  You, the parent, the grandparent, the business owner, the taxpayer will pay more in taxes and receive less in school programming for our children.

I’d like to share a few examples regarding the Governor’s Executive Budget proposal and how it will impact our students.  The Governor has claimed a victory by stating that under her leadership full state aid funding to all school districts has been accomplished.  While this is true to some extent, the schools that have benefitted the most are wealthy districts, not low-wealth, high-need districts.  By the way, she accomplished this by using a massive infusion of Federal dollars; money that is now gone.  Therefore, with her Executive Budget, she is now proposing that districts give money back to the State or use reserves to make up lost state aid dollars.  This would mean that the taxpayer in Dansville would have to make up the lost state aid and/or the District would have to cut programming.

A second dagger to the heart of our program (the budget) is that the Governor is proposing to change the inflationary adjustment (everything costs more) that accurately reflects the costs districts pay for everything from liability insurance to fuel, paper, buses, etc.  The cost of putting food on your table and keeping your house warm keeps going up and so do all of the costs of operating a school district to educate our children.  The national inflationary adjustment is 4.1%.  Instead of adopting the national inflationary adjustment rate, the Governor proposes to adopt a rate of 2.4% - a number she just picked out of the air! She decided that was the number she was going to use in her budget proposal.  Simply put, she wants to take more money away from districts.

My final point, though there are several others, is that her budget leads us to conclude that she believes the cost of educating children today has remained the same over the last 10 years.  The student population in most upstate, rural schools has declined over the last ten years and nearly all districts in our region have, but she believes that districts should be able to educate fewer students with the same dollars that districts used to receive.  Unfortunately, that just isn’t the reality.  The cost of educating our young people has risen dramatically.  This is due to unfunded mandates and unfunded regulations, with which the State has burdened districts, without supporting these additions financially.

I urge you in the strongest possible way to visit the ‘Talking Points’ pages that are on our School District website (dansvillecsd) then email or call the elected officials at the end of that document.  Demand that they reject the Governor’s Executive Budget proposal and fund school districts at the appropriate levels so we can provide the high-quality education our children deserve.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me by email: koppt@dansvillecsd.org

 

Respectfully yours,

 

Thomas K. Kopp

Interim Superintendent

 

Other Letters:

Governor's Budget and increased need for Interventions