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2010-11 School Budget

On May 18, F-M voters approved the proposed 2010-11 school budget. (Voting results)

The $74,020,753 budget increases spending $505,847, or 0.69 percent, over the 2009-10 budget. The district's tax levy increases by 1.89 percent to $51,556,141. That's the lowest tax levy percentage increase this year among Onondaga County Schools, according to this story in The Post-Standard.

More on F-M's 2010-11 budget:

District officials said the budget creation was guided by the district's 21st Century Learner Attributes. The budget also incorporated the ideas and values of district residents, as expressed during three budget forums and an online budget survey. 

The challenges

F-M's 2010-11 budget accounted for these challenges:

  • Onondaga County leaders plans to reduce the amount of money the district receives through sharing of sales tax money. In 2009-10, the district received about $1 million. The amount was expected to be cut in half prior to the passage of F-M's budget.
  • Under the state’s executive budget proposal, F-M expected to lose more than $2.3 million in state aid this school year. That would have been a drop of 11.3 percent, equivalent to an additional 5 percent increase in F-M’s property tax levy.
  • Federal stimulus money, which offset cuts in state aid this year, was expected to run out.
  • While household costs are stable, costs for education are rising. 

F-M's response

The district anticipated most of these challenges and prepared by paying down debts and paying ahead on leases when revenues exceeded costs.

The district is continuing to find ways to save money through energy conservation, contract negotiations, outsourcing and eliminating positions through attrition. The budget lines for supplies in 2010-11 remain 10 percent lower than in 2008-09. Spending on musical equipment will remain down by 55 percent. (See the list of cumulative cost savings and reductions in the budget.)

Residents getting more involved

Because more difficult cuts may be required in future years, the district is doing more than ever to get residents involved. The district held three budget forums and conducted an online survey. Residents made it clear that they want the quality of F-M’s education to be maintained. They also offered many ideas for cutting school spending to keep next year’s budget increase low.

On voting day, more than 31 percent of voters participated in an anonymous exit survey, which district officials will use in future decision making, including building the 2011-12 budget.



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