Archive for March, 2013

Budget reactions (updated 2X)

March 29th, 2013 by Robert Lowry

On Wednesday, I sent a note to superintendents asking, now that you have seen the School Aid run for your district, what are your reactions.

Here is one response, from the leader of a rural Western New York district.  I’d say it’s the most compelling, but the mixture of sentiments expressed is very typical:

My first reaction is one of sincere gratitude, and I called both of my legislators first thing this morning to thank them for their advocacy.

On the other hand, despite the increase, I spent my day today meeting with employees to let them know they are losing their jobs.

If future increases fail to make a more significant impact on the GEA [Gap Elimination Adjustment] more quickly, our district anticipates a growing gap in the two years following next, and we do not have many more places where we can cut.

Read the rest of this entry »

Category: Finance, Legislation, State Budget, Teachers | Comments Off on Budget reactions (updated 2X)

Consolidation: An answer, not the answer

March 17th, 2013 by Robert Lowry

The Associated Press reports,

The New York state budget currently under negotiation may be remembered years from now as the beginning of the end for many small towns, cities and school districts.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo had tough words Friday for local officials facing fiscal crises and seeking more help from Albany, telling them they should consolidate services, school districts or whole governments rather than looking for relief from Albany.

 The piece goes on,

 “If it was really, really tough, you’d see that happen,” Cuomo said in his strongest comments yet on the local fiscal crises. “If you are a school district, or a city, or a town or a county, and you are looking for a fundamental financial reform, consolidation is one of the obvious ones.”

Consolidation is an answer to some financial challenges and should be one of the strategies available to manage fiscal threats.

But it is not the answer for all situations, and it is no answer for some of the most financially troubled communities.

Read the rest of this entry »

Category: Finance, Legislation, State Budget | Comments Off on Consolidation: An answer, not the answer