Personnel Reductions Part Of BCS Budget Discussions

To bring the 2020-21 budget in line, Brookfield Central School could likely see reductions in personnel.

What those are, and how many are needed, will be decided at the board’s next meeting Wednesday, May 20 at 6 p.m. By then some state aid that remains uncertain should be settled.

Brookfield’s Board of Education members met remotely last week in a meeting shown live on YouTube. Nine people watched.

Because the discussion involved personnel, board members discussed details in executive session after the public session.

Brookfield, like other school districts in New York state, has had to significantly change its budget since mid-March because the state took away all increases in state aid for next year. Plows said first tier reductions - cuts in expenses such as purchases and materials - have been done.

Other reductions in the budget plan, ones Plows said do not hurt the academic program, included holding off on buying a small school bus. These first tier cuts saved $149,000.

That all still leaves a deficit of $444,000. “How we need to examine second tier reductions,’’ he said. “Every one of them is a personnel issue.’’

Also being factored in to the next spending plan is how much more the district will need to spend to meet state requirements for coronavirus operations, such as sanitizing and distancing students in the building. The estimate, based somewhat on costs incurred this year, is $35,000, although Plows cautioned without state guidelines known he doesn’t know how accurate that is.

Second tier cuts, offset by the addition of the $35,000, bring the deficit down to $330,000. While Brookfield has savings of $1.4 million, Plows said the district needs...

The full story is in this week's edition of the newspaper.