By a vote of 7-2, the BOE tonight passed a $59,115,622 Budget, an increase of 6.41% over last year. If my math is correct, this amount alone -- that is to say, without the Town-side Budget -- would result in more than a 4.5% tax increase.
Bill Wellman and Julie Turk were the two nay votes; there was not one cut from the Superintendent's proposed budget with the exception of a reduction in the amount of money to be paid to the magnet school because more was budgeted than is necessary.
Bill Wellman said that although the Superintendent had presented her Budget to the Board with an explanation that it should take into account the means of the taxpayers to pay, he heard a lot of "testimony" about school needs but nothing about the means of the taxpayers. He added, "All I've heard is a statement from Ray Jankowski at last Monday's Town Council Meeting, the Town's Director of Finance, that we ought to be in survival mode."
It was a difficult night to witness. Now the Budget goes to the Mayor.