After months of debate and presentation, the Lynbrook Board of Education adopted a budget for the 2012-13 school year during the final 2012 budget work session Wednesday night at
The $74,468,696 budget represents a $1,571,811 (or 2.156 percent) increase from the 2011-12 school year. The estimated tax levy is $64,423,666, or 2.34 percent. This falls below the maximum allowable tax levy imposed by New York State. Because of this, the district will only need a simple majority (51 percent) to pass the budget, according to a presentation by Assistant Superintendent for Business, Dr. Melissa Burak.
The 2.156 percent increase represents the lowest increase since before the 2005-06 school year. In fact, budget increases have gone down in each of the last eight years, according to the presentation.
Burak noted that, despite the overall increase, a majority of the districts expenditures are expected to decrease in 2012-13. Increases are shown in the salaries, benefits, and the interfund transfers section of the new budget, according to the presentation.
The interfund transfers increase occurred due to bathroom renovations and an increase in funding for the school lunch program. Benefit increases include mandated health insurance increases and pension funding, according to Burak.
Three additional propositions were revealed following the budget presentation. One of the propositions dealt with the issue of in the district, one that has recently among board members.
The board voted to ask the community to approve a capital funding proposition that would include the installation of a turf field at Elementary School, movement of the baseball field to , athletic netting to place around the South Middle School “field oval”, movement of the South Middle School discus area, music rooms, elevator, IT storage, athletic locker rooms (or ‘team rooms’), field re-sodding and exterior restrooms at .
The proposed project would remove $5,550,000 from a capital reserve fund that currently contains $6.9 million, according to the board.
The netting around the “field oval” at South Middle School would give the district extra practice space for a district team, according to Superintendent Dr. Santo Barbarino.
A plan previously proposed by Barbarino included a second turf field in the district. This plan would have removed $6,125,000 from the capital reserve funds.
Board members expressed discomfort at the original proposal because of the potential replacement costs of two field turfs and the prospect of using up such a large majority of the capital reserve fund.
The capital reserve fund can only be used for facility upgrade projects, according to the board.
Two other propositions will be up for a vote. The district will ask the public to approve a $98,000 expenditure from the technology replacement fund. That money would be used for server upgrades, printer and monitor upgrades, and the changeover of the high school art and technology lab to a Macintosh platform. The fund currently contains approximately $885,000, according to Burak.
The final proposition up for a vote will be the extension of the technology replacement fund. If approved, this would extend the reserve expiration date to help offset some of the budget increases. As presently constituted, this reserve is scheduled to expire in June, according to Burak.
The budget hearing is on May 2 and the budget vote is on May 15.