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October 16, 2018

Fulton Officials Approve Final School Budget


FULTON, NY – The Fulton City School District Board of Education unanimously approved the school’s final $70,336,500 budget for the 2016-2017 school year, a 2.47% increase from the current budget.

Increased state aid in the amount of $1.1 million and an additional $268,000 increase in expense driven aids allowed the district to eliminate the $702,581 shortfall they faced during the draft process of budget development.

“The foundation aid increase is monumental to our district,” said Superintendent of Schools William Lynch.

The FCSD Board of Education unanimously approved the district's final budget for the 2016-2017 school year. Pictured are Board of Education President, David Cordone at left and Superintendent of Schools, William Lynch at right.

The FCSD Board of Education unanimously approved the district’s final budget for the 2016-2017 school year. Pictured are Board of Education President, David Cordone at left and Superintendent of Schools, William Lynch at right.

More so, they were able to lower the use of Designated Fund Balance from $1 million to $676,000.

The total budget brings forth a $1,695,439 increase from the current school year budget stemming from a $472,033 increase in the program budget, a $1,097,072 increase in the capital budget and a $126,334 increase in the administrative budget.

“The capital portion is the largest increase we see there,” said Superintendent Lynch.

However, he explained that school officials have added a Capital Project Outlay not to exceed $100,000 and have increased their amount of debt payment.

The Capital Project Outlay entails up to $100,000 worth of improvements throughout the district that can be made in the 2016-2017 school year following State Education Department approval and would receive anywhere from 90-98% in aid in the 2017-2018 school year.

Site work at the education center such as rehabilitating the sidewalks, which is currently an alternate in the district’s capital project has been identified as qualified work for the Capital Project Outlay.

Aside from adding the increased capital budget, school officials also added $241,424 to the general fund for “Community Schools” required through the state budget and is funded by an equivalent amount set aside from foundation aid.

The local tax levy increased to $20,583,063; an $88,451 increase from the current school year that stays within the permissible levy limit with a simple majority.

The final budget approved by unanimous vote of the Board of Education also allowed for FCSD to replace retirements, lower primary sections class sizes to approximately 20 students per grade level section (kindergarten through second grade), maintain all current FTE positions from the current school year, and maintain all current educational programs, services and opportunities all while using less reserves than previous years.

In total, the FCSD used $624,000 less of all reserves combined than in the current school year.

“We are able to be less reliant on reserves. That is something, that if the district can maintain that, we will continue to be in a good place,” said Lynch. “We are very fortunate to be having this conversation at this point in time because the budget process is a long one and you never know where you’ll end up.”

Board of Education member Christine Plath expressed her gratitude for everyone in the district and their overall ability to allow the district to be in good standing.

“I just want to say great job to the staff and administrators. We are in a good financial position, I mean, we are adding people, our programs are flourishing. It’s just a great feeling to know that our district is thriving financially and educationally,” she said.

The budget will go for the public vote on May 17 from 9 a.m. until 9 p.m. with voters residing on the east side of the city to vote at Cayuga Community College while voters residing on the west side of the city will vote at CiTi Fulton Campus.

“I am very pleased with the budget the board approved. We are very thankful for the state government, the governors proposal and legislatures enhancements that increased state aid and for providing it at a ratio that is fair and equitable which helps to benefit low wealth, high need districts like ours. When we do get money, we are able to do great things with it so we are grateful. We also do multi-year budgeting, so a lot of past decisions have helped us get here and the decisions we make now will continue to benefit the district in the future. Overall, I am very gratified. This is a long process and we are able to end it without needing to take anything away from our district,” said Superintendent Lynch.

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6 Responses “Fulton Officials Approve Final School Budget”

  1. Mike
    April 13, 2016 at 8:03 am

    Why are we using BOCES and CCC for polling places when we own buildings on both sides of the river?

  2. Mikayla Kemp
    April 13, 2016 at 8:53 am

    Hi, Mike! I am providing a link to a previous article that explains the change in polling locations this year. There will also be at least one more article in relation to voting and where to do so before May, so be sure to keep checking back!

    Essentially, these locations are on opposite sides of the river. CiTi (Boces) Fulton office is located on W. Broadway, and CCC is located just off 481 in the former K-Mart Plaza. Check the link for exact addresses and a little more information.

    http://oswegocountytoday.com/fcsd-modifies-election-districts-polling-locations-schedules-budget-hearing/

  3. Mike
    April 13, 2016 at 9:46 am

    There has never been a “large flow” of people going to vote. 1700 – 1800 over 12 hours is not much. Could have used the Ed Center for one side and Granby for the other. I’ll bet most people don’t even know that BOCES is in the old strip mall.

  4. George
    April 13, 2016 at 4:58 pm

    How can we jusitify the money for the Community Schools? I remember when this started it was supposed to have all these services and outreach for families needing them. It has done very little as promised and I very rarely see anything about what it is doing. Seems like it needs some PR done. I also never understood why it was based off of the bus route and so far from families who need it the most. This is a waste and should not be approved.

  5. Louisville Mills
    April 13, 2016 at 8:03 pm

    This is getting out of hand. No one can afford what we pay now so keep raising them. This is just outrageous

  6. Megan DeBan
    April 15, 2016 at 10:56 am

    I see it is stated all services and programs will remain the same. Except for Volneys special needs 8:1:1 program is being discontinued. My son requires a smaller learning environment much like his peers. My soon also requires 100% hand over hand care. Now the district is discontinuing this program and making a 12:1:1 program. This is the largest learning environment my son will ever be in. Now you are asking one teacher, one teachers assistant with 12 severally disabled special needs children that may or may not have a one on one aides. I know my sons aides often have to help with children without aides. It’s nice to see everything that stayed the same, but not everything did. I also would like to know if they are going to make sure all over the cameras on the school buses are working, and the bus aides are well trained and our children are safe.

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