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Shelter Island School District budget passes with ease

It was smiles all around from school officials Tuesday night with the announcement from District Clerk Jacki Dunning that the voters had given the $12.4 million budget for the 2022-23 school year a resounding endorsement. The vote was 165 to 16.

Two incumbent Board of Education members running unopposed — Kathleen Lynch and Katherine Rossi-Snook — were re-elected to three-year terms. Ms. Lynch received 148 votes and Ms. Rossi-Snook 144.

What gave administrators and Board of Education members confidence going into the election was a spending plan that won’t raise taxes. The amount of money from taxpayers to fund the next budget is exactly what was needed to fund the current budget —  $11.016 million. The difference in spending is $60,576, and that’s covered by added money from New York State,

The result is expected to actually decrease taxes because of a wider tax base.

There were six budget workshops and a public hearing in the course of budget development and presentation. No one, outside of the Board and  administrators raised any issues with the budget during those sessions.

“We are extremely happy and proud of the strong support from our community,” said Superintendent Brian Doelger, Ed.D. “Thank you for supporting us. We will continue to try to provide as great an education as possible while being fiscally responsible.”

Ms. Lynch said she was happy and grateful for the budget vote. “It’s been an amazing year,” she said.

Ms. Rossi-Snook was not available for comment.

“It was an excellent budget year,” Board President Margaret Colligan said. The board was in sync and the community responded, she said.

From the outset, Mr. Doelger said the goals in constructing the 2022-23 were:

• Stay below the state-imposed 2% tax cap.

• Adopt a budget that values fiscal restraint.

• Identify and implement cost savings. • Provides the best education possible at the most efficient cost.