NEW BERLIN – In the wake of New York Gov. David Paterson’s recent announcement that he’ll slash state aid, the Unadilla Valley School District is preparing itself, like many other area schools, for the long fiscal road that may lie ahead.
“As a superintendent it has been incredibly frustrating time for us. We’re working very hard and want to make sure the community, the students and the teachers can’t feel those frustrations during our current school year – but I tell people I make no promises about the impacts coming for next school year,” said Unadilla Valley Superintendent Robert Mackey.
According to state Budget Director Robert Megna, New York is on schedule to have a $1 billion dollar shortfall in its general fund by the start of the new year, an owed amount higher than any previous lapse by the state.
On Dec. 9, Paterson said he was reducing state aid payments to schools, local governments and non-profit organizations citing the deteriorating state of New York’s finances.
This announcement came as an even harder blow to the UV school district, explained Mackey.
Due to a tardy audit reported filed one day past the Nov. 15 deadline by the school, its general aid payment for the month of November was temporarily held by the state.
Schools receive monthly payments for their budgeted aid throughout the year, he explained.
The November payments were delayed into December when the Gov. announced the planned aid cuts. Soon after, when the school received its backlogged November payment, it noticed that it had also received the reduction given to the scheduled December payments.