B-G seeks community input in managing $1.2 million deficit

BAINBRIDGE – Approximately 80 members of the community attended last night’s Bainbridge-Guilford Central School District budget forum, held in the B-G High School auditorium.

Due in part to both the statewide Gap Elimination Adjustment (GEA), which cuts funding to schools in an effort to reduce the state deficit, and because of the school’s designation as average needs instead of high, the Bainbridge-Guilford Central School District is struggling to manage a $1.2 million deficit for the 2013-2014 school year. If B-G was considered a high needs school, it would be receiving an additional $500,000 in state aid for the upcoming school year, according to school officials.

Monday night’s public forum follows in the wake of another, which was held March 4, and the new proposed budget reflects changes made at the bequest of those in attendance.

“We really are trying to make the adjustments to the budget based on the community’s feedback,” said Superintendent Dr. Don Wheeler.

To manage the $1.2 million deficit, the BOE and school administrators are proposing to increase taxes by the 4.89 percent tax cap, use $438,330 of the school’s reserves and cut a variety of programs and positions amounting to $779,708 in cuts. The cuts would include six secondary positions, three elementary, and two facilities/general support positions.

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