What is actually a Contingency Budget?
How does is affect our decision for Long Island school budget vote every year as a result increasing our Property Taxes to stratosphere?
Well in short we have no right to reduce taxes based on economic conditions. If they school budget for year 2010-2011 was say $100. and State paid $50 and tax levy was $50. Then this year 2011-2012 say state reduced the aid to $45 and assume CPI is 0.
Then the budget still stays at $100 and they will charge the tax levy at $55 to residents which is a 10% increase. And they don't even need a vote for that.
Now all they will do to fix the budget is not to cut fat but services as they are mandated to pay pensions and benefits which are skyrocketing. So if they need an additional $2 for this year for the benefits and pensions they will just cut staff and services to make for that $2. So its a double whammy !
1) You get charged 10% more in taxes
2) Less teachers more class size plus less services in sports , music programs, etc.
All because we have to pay those ridiculous pensions and benefits and pay raises. You voted for $100 as the budget last year not for $50 as taxes(its the loophole). So you have to pay up anyway whether you reject the vote.
Read Middle Country's budget, blackmail for 2011-2012 as an example !
A: Under New York State education law, if the proposed budget fails, the board may adopt a contingency budget or resubmit the defeated or a modified budget for a second vote. In the event that the proposed budget fails again, then the board is required to adopt a contingency budget.
A contingency budget is supposed to fund only those items determined by the board to constitute "ordinary contingent expenses." Generally, an expense is considered contingent if it is a legal obligation, or necessary to maintain the educational program, preserve property or assure the health and safety of the students or staff. The scope of ordinary contingent expenses was expanded by recent amendments to the law and no longer excludes items such as library books, interscholastic athletics, other extracurricular activities, and field trips, as had been done previously.
The contingency budget is capped at the lesser of: 1) 120% of the CPI; or 2) 4% over the prior year's budget. There are some additional restrictions, including limitations on the administrative component, on equipment expenditures and on facilities use. In addition, there are certain exceptions to the calculation, including debt service, tax certiorari payments and changes driven by enrollment increases. It is up to the board to develop and adopt a contingency budget; the voters are not involved.