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Monday, May 19, 2008

Tuesday, May 20...

is the New Hartford Central School budget vote 7:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m. in the High School Gymnasium.

Strikeslip's blog got us to thinking about how New Hartford's budget increase is distributed. So we did some figuring using the information in the Spring issue of the Report Card, a brochure sent to homes by the New Hartford Central School.


* Consumer price index (CPI) is an index number measuring the average price of consumer goods and services purchased by households.

So spending is above the rate of inflation and includes a 13% increase for administration, but only a 3% increase for the program component. It's for the children...

Please be sure to take the time to vote.

17 comments:

Strikeslip said...

Wonder what's going on with administrators? 13% increase in NH and 19% in Utica . . . I guess rules on contingency budgets don't apply to them.

Anonymous said...

There are many components to the administrative budget most notably costs paid to BOCES for their operations and their recently approved capital project. This could account for almost all of the proposed increase. It would be advisable to ask what the administrative increase entails before categorically voting no without information. That's why its important to attend BoE meetings and budget hearings...they are the place to have questions such as this answered.

New Hartford, N.Y. Online said...

Concerned Citizens has attended BOE meetings. After 30 minutes, they go into executive session. It's not worth the time to go.

We also tried to get a copy of the budget. We were given a 7 page document. Anyone who thinks the New Hartford Central School is run using a 7 page budget is kidding themselves. We have tried to get information out to the public, it is clear the school prefers to keep everyone in the dark.

It would be nice if the school would be more open. Instead they have the attitude "if you wanted to know, you would ask". However, when we asked through the FOIL process, we were ignored.

Obviously, you work for the school.

Anonymous said...

I live in New Hartford and I work for a local school district, but not New Hartford. Every Board of Education meeting has a time set aside where residents can address the Board and ask questions. The annual budget hearing provides a perfect opportunity to ask these type of questions. We as residents have elected the Board of Education, they are the representatives that the majority of the community wanted and as such it is their responsibility to answer questions that residents ask, but they can't address a question that has not been asked.

Maybe the administrative budget is related to the BOCES Capital project that was voted on and passed, maybe it isn't. If you have not taken the time to ask then what's the point of complaining. I'm not sure I understand why you would want to rely on FOIL for such a simple, specific question instead of just asking at a regularly scheduled Board Meeting.

Whether you voted for them or not the BoE members are your representatives and I believe they would give you and answer to the best of their knowledge. If you ask and they are evasive or if they blow you off then I guess you can resort to FOILing, but are you so antagonistic toward your elected school leaders that you won't even come to a meeting to ask a legitimate question? Does the democratic process bother you that much? If Ted Kennedy and George W. Bush can work together with their hugely divergent points of view I'm quite certain you can come to a school board meeting and ask a simple question instead of jumping to conclusions and making hypothetical assumptions.

New Hartford, N.Y. Online said...

Oh, my friend, you are very naive!

swimmy said...

This increase doesn't have anything to do with the school shelling out monies for the highway improvements regarding the Hartford's free renovations, would it?

To anonymous. If you have never been to a board of education meeting or budget hearing held at nh, then don't speak! You only demonstrate your ignorance of the issues.

New Hartford, N.Y. Online said...

swimmy,

Isn't it funny that the school doesn't "need" the monies to be generated by the New Hartford Business Park over the next 15 years, yet they "need" more monies from the taxpayers to cover this year's budget. And how is it o.k. to use school tax revenues to build roads?

Anonymous said...

I am sad to say that this is the FIRST school vote that I am sitting out . It has become a exercise in futility to vote in this sham. The school "bored" holds all the aces in this game.If the budget is voted down they will threaten us with a contingency budget that does nothing or can even raise our taxes by some perverted logic. The NYS school boards assn. in association with nysut have got us by the.....

Anonymous said...

Swimmy,

I have been to Board of Ed meetings before. Every single time I have gone they have always given time at the beginning or the end of the meeting for residents to address the Board with questions or comments.

If you had ever gone to a Board of Ed meeting you would know that. Who is the ignorant one?

New Hartford, N.Y. Online said...

Sure, the BOE gives time at the beginning to ask questions, but do they give out enough information so that you can ask questions? NO

Are they willing to let everyone see the 'whole' budget? NO

What are they hiding?

Considering all the additional assessed value added to the tax roll each year, how can there be a budget increase year after year?

What happens when that additional assessed value is no longer being added? Think the school will cut back on their spending?

Anonymous said...

clearly, in a representative society, we elect them to squander our money. That's why we elected them so we didn't have to do it ourselves. We're not supposed to question such activities. We elected them to do a job and they will do it how they choose to do it.

Who are we to think that it should be the other way around? Who are we to foolishly think that government should be open and tell us who put them there what they are doing? Shall I continue?

swimmy said...

to anonymous one,

I've been to them too. And as Concerned Citizens rightly pointed out, if there was information for us to ask questions about, then it would be worth one's while to ask questions. But if you don't know what's going on, they won't "waste the board's time informing you of what [they're] elected to handle."

Of course, what do I know. The last time I attended a boe meeting was before I went to law school, now I'm a lawyer.

swimmy said...

Also, if you have been to a boe in NH. From your refusal to answer that you've been to one IN NEW HARTFORD, I guess you have not...

Anonymous said...

"Just open up a little wider".....no you are not in the dentist"s office you are just another hapless taxpayer facing your NHCS taxbill. Ain't we lucky to be living in this earthly paradise?

newhartfordpeople said...

Congratulations on passing your budget. Glad I aint paying your tax rate.

NHCS needs to have the best of everything. Too bad the school population is shrinking.

BJM said...

For Anonymous -
I have a great Idea....Heres how ALL districts should run and I want an Honest Opinion from every one.

Serving ON the Board
1. Board Membership should be restricted to those members who have student actually attending the schools in the district and are property owners within the district. When thier last child leaves school the finish thier term and leave.

REASON: Thier decisions would affect both thier children and thier pocket books.

2. Employees or Contractees of the School District should NOT be allowed to vote in budget votes.

REASON: this is a CLEAR conflict of interest, without exception there has NEVER been a reduction in taxes only two things, Staying at the same level or increase. If where I worked I could vote to increase my salary I would. Now I understand that some employees are also tax payers and have children in the district but it does not outweigh the conflict of interest in my opinion

These two changes would reflect in budget votes a more truthfull reflection of how voters stand, I wonder after the Supers claim that this was a clear indication of support how many voters were district employees and of that how many voted against the budget.

New Hartford, N.Y. Online said...

BJM,

Though we will never see this happen, you are probably on to something. Does anyone believe that the school does not "request" that all teachers, employees, etc. that live in the district vote for the budget? Does anyone believe that the 18 year old students are not "encouraged" to vote for the budget?

Next problem is called "partnering with the school". That's the mantra of the current town board. Do you recall our blog You Scratch My Back with the link to the letter that Dan Gilligan sent out to school employees? Tell us why you think a school superintendent that does not even live in the school district or town would send out a letter on school letterhead reminding people to vote for the town bond issue. Isn't it illegal or improper for a school official to use taxpayer money to influence a vote? Does anyone believe that the same thing in reverse is not happening when the school holds an election.

Until John Q. Taxpayer who isn't on the school or town payroll wakes up and gets out to vote, you will not see a budget defeated.