School budgets up for vote on May 21


By Joe Moskowitz
Next Tuesday is a big day for public school administrators across New York as voters decide whether to accept or reject budget proposals for the 2013-14 school year. And this year two area districts have contested races for board of education seats.

In Andes, voters must decide between incumbent Gerard Murphy and challenger Robert Storey for the one open board seat. The proposed spending plan of $3,796,888 is 4.24 percent higher than this year, but the tax levy increase is 2.18 percent An increase in state aid helped reduce the amount the district might have asked local taxpayers to spend.

Voters in the Margaretville Central School District are being asked to approve a budget of nearly $10,580,000. That represents an increase of 1.98 percent over this year’s spending plan and, in order to pay for it, there would be a 3.39 percent increase in the tax levy. As with most districts, MCS received an increase in state aid, but it was lower than many schools because New York considers Margaretville to be a real estate “wealthy” district.

There is one open MCS board seat. Incumbent Board President Randy Moore is being challenged by Terry Johnson.

In Roxbury, Will Finch is running unopposed for the one vacant school board seat. But voters will still have a decision to make. RCS is seeking approval of its proposed 2013-14 spending plan. It calls for an increase of 3.59 percent, bringing proposed spending to $10,005,134. If approved, the tax levy hike would be 1.98 percent.

Voting in Andes will take place from noon until 9 p.m. on Tuesday, May 21. Margaretville voters can cast their ballots anytime between 2 and 8 p.m. MCS always schedules a choral concert to try and lure more voters into the school. Roxbury has a tradition of hosting a chicken barbecue on school-voting day. It starts at 3 p.m. and voting takes place until 9 p.m.