Voting Today Until 8 pm on BKW 2019-20 Budget/Board of Education

On Tuesday, May 21, residents of the Berne-Knox-Westerlo Central School District will go to the polls to vote on the district’s proposed, $23,882,634 budget for the 2019-20 school year.  Voting will be held 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. in the high school auditorium. Voters will also elect two members to the Board of Education at that time.

Please access the district’s Budget Page for complete information or check your mail for the annual budget newsletter.

The 2019-290 proposed budget would increase spending 2.7 percent or $627,448 from the current year. This would result in a 0.5 percent or $55,277 tax levy increase. The proposed levy is less than the district’s tax levy limit and will require a simple majority of 50 percent plus one vote for approval.

The major increase in the budget is due to a $400,000 increase in the district’s prescription insurance plan and contractual obligations.

“This budget represents the board of education’s attempt to balance the growing demand to meet our students’ educational and developmental needs with the practical limits of our tax revenues,” said Superintendent Dr. Timothy Mundell.

“No one likes the idea of any tax increase, but that’s not realistic when medical insurance costs outpace inflation. By using reserves, this budget holds the levy increase to 0.5 percent or roughly $12 on a $100,000 home.”

The budget vote will take place on Tuesday, May 21 from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. in the Secondary School Auditorium. Also on the ballot will be a proposition to purchase two 66-passenger buses and three Suburbans. There are also two seats up for election on the Board of Education.

Budget highlights

The proposed budget:

  • Adds a new Pre-K teacher to expand the program from one section to two,
  • Maintains all existing program and staffing,
  • Supports the long-term sustainability of Pre-K, Bulldog Club, Speech Therapy, and the School Resource Officer program,
  • Trains a staff member in preparation for adding AP Marine Science, making nearly 20 college credit bearing courses available to our students,
  • Funds the I-Ready Formative Math Assessment program for real-time data analysis,
  • Funds regional curriculum development work to align with Next Gen standards, and
  • Supports a long-term plan for replacing obsolete capital equipment.