Mount Markham Board of Education members heard a first pass at the 2022-23 budget.
Business Administrator Lou D’Ambro went over the revenues and expenses as anticipated in mid-February. He also reviewed the schedule for finalizing the budget, with Board approval coming April 20 before the May 10 public hearing and May 17 public vote.
The tentative budget comes in at about $29.5 million. D’Ambro said it’s expected the increase in the tax levy will fall under the district’s allotted tax cap rate for this year of 1.94 percent. That comes to about an additional $138,000.
D’Ambro discussed the district’s reserve funds, which are savings accounts set up for specific upcoming expenses. Doing so will allow Mount Markham to put $2 million toward the capital project approved in December. D’Ambro said another benefit is that money used out of reserve funds is 95 percent reimbursed.
Mostly, though, the reserves are not used, which D’Ambro said is good because expenses can be handled in the general budget. Voters will decide whether a new 10-year reserve for capital projects can be established for the next project in five or so years.
Because of the pandemic, Mount Markham and other districts received federal funds to address lost learning and revenue over the past two years. D’Ambro said there are restrictions and specifications on using that money, such as for after school and summer learning.
Other federal funds are not as restrictive and can be used to supplant money from the general fund.
The early state aid picture has Mount Markham fairing very well, he said. Gov. Kathy Hochul is looking to restore Foundation aid over the next two years; for Mount Markham this means an additional $725,000 for the next two years.
Expense-driven aid - that which reimburses expenses - does not change much. He noted 20 percent of the state’s Foundation aid comes from lottery revenues; Mount Markham receives $2.1 million of its aid from the lottery.
The budget will increase by about…