Voters get the final say on the Shelter Island District’s budget for the 2016-17 year on Tuesday when the polls at the school gymnasium will be open between noon and 9 p.m.The proposed $10.96 million budget would raise the tax levy — the amount that comes from taxes — by 5.92 percent. But the actual spending planned for next year is $24,114 less than was sought for the current school year.
No cuts have been made in academic programs, although retirements have resulted in lower costs in that area, according to district business manager Tim Laube.
Cuts by state mandate would have to come from athletics, cafeteria operation, co-curricular activities, the planned prekindergarten program for 4-year-olds, occupational education classes offered by Eastern Suffolk BOCES, field trips, driver’s education and/or equipment purchases.
If the budget passes, the district projects an increase of $17.24 per $100,000 of assessed property valuation.
Because the budget pierces the tax cap imposed by New York State, the district needs 60 percent voter approval or it will be forced into a second vote that could be on the same or a revised budget.
A second turn-down would result in a contingency budget that by state dictates would require cuts from specific lines by $559,127.
Increases in administration have largely resulted from unfunded state mandates, increased BOCES costs and the fact that Mr. Laube came aboard late last year. His salary would be for a full year in the new budget.