Shoreham-Wading River school board members unanimously approved the budget for the 2019-2020 academic year — including recent modifications made to the district’s tax levy.
The $75.9 million budget is a 1.57% increase from the current budget, district officials said.
The majority of the new, approved budget — almost 70% — will go toward employee salaries and benefits. District-wide expenses, transportation, and debt and transfers account for roughly 18% of the budget.
The previously presented tax levy limit of 2.9% decreased after the school received an increase in state building aid March 31 in the state-adopted budget, Superintendent Gerard Poole said Thursday. The current tax levy limit with exclusions is 2.3% and remains under the state tax cap.
While the levy is at a 2.3% increase, district officials said some homeowners will see an increase in taxes higher than that because of outside factors, including the homeowner’s assessed property value.
As previously reported in the News Review, the district aims to maintain all current programing and enhance student opportunities. With the budget, the district will bring seven new clubs to the elementary schools and middle school, six new high school electives, a new online high school newspaper, club basketball team, expansion of temporary fitness center, and distribution of Chromebooks in grades 9-12.
The district hopes to improve student safety by improving emergency access and installing several security measures: an integrated video, door access and alarm management system, more video surveillance cameras, additional fencing and gates outside Prodell Middle School, Miller Avenue and Wading River Elementary Schools.
A budget hearing will be held Tuesday, May 7 at the high school library. The budget vote is from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday, May 21 in the high school gym.