CLYMER, N.Y. — A retirement incentive that was recently offered at Clymer Central School has resulted in some acceptance letters.
During an April 5 meeting, members of the Clymer school board will formally announce and accept those retirements, and are also expected to approved the 2010-11 school budget, said Superintendent Scott Smith.
“It is the board’s intent to publicly approve and adopt the budget at the next meeting,” Smith said. “However, if there is some benefit to holding off, we may schedule an additional April meeting.”
Clymer — like many other public schools in New York state — has been weathering a difficult budget process due to a $1.1 billion state aid cut to schools that was proposed by Gov. David Paterson in December.
At this time, the district is expecting a 4.3 percent state-aid reduction for the 2010-11 school year that translates into a loss of about $235,453.
In addition to a state aid shortage, the district is also facing a 4.4 percent increase in salaries, and an 11 percent increase in health insurance costs.
“The New York state Legislature has not approved its budget yet and it’s not likely they will by the April 1 deadline,” Smith said. “That doesn’t leave us with final numbers, so the district must construct a budget based on estimated numbers from the governor.”
To help make up the expected revenue loss, Clymer officials offered two retirement incentives.
In February, members of the Clymer Education Association — a teacher’s union — who qualified for retirement were offered $20,000. These employees have until Wednesday to accept the deal.
The second offer of $7,000 was made in March to members of the Education Support Personnel. These staff members have until April 26 to accept the incentive.
Anyone who retires will have the one-time payment placed in a 403(b) account, a tax-advantage retirement savings plan available only to public education organizers and some nonprofit employers.
Smith, along with Business Manager Annette Rheberghen and members of the board of education, have spent the last several months reducing budget spending without cutting student programs.
“I think the board has come up with a plan that protects programming but is fair to the taxpayers,” Smith said.
If the board approves the proposed budget on April 5, the spending plan would then go up for a public presentation on May 10.
A public vote is scheduled for May 18.