After tonight's vote, the Mamaroneck School District will not be resorting to a contingency budget after all.
The public voted overwhelmingly to pass the , 1,832 to 432, a 77 percent margin. The budget was a $1 million decrease over the 2011-12 budget, and stays within the two percent tax cap. The tax levy will only increase 1.08 percent, however, property taxes will be approximately $372 more annually for the average assessed home at $20K due to a decreased value of homes in the district and an increase in property tax challenges. In order to keep the budget within the cap, the school made several cuts including five staff positions and the outsourcing of approximately 35 transporation employees.
"The budget minimizes the taxpayer burden yet at the same time it maintains the excellence in our schools," said District Spokesperson Debbie Manetta.
A $9.5 million bond to fund the district's five-year capital plan was also approved by a 1,832 to 483 margin.
In the first contested school board race in six years, incumbent Robin Nichinsky (1,493 votes) and newcomers Melany Gray (1,708 votes) and Roger Martin (1,491 votes) defeated independent candidate Victor Gatti (762 votes) for three open seats. Gatti announced his candidacy a few weeks prior to the election.
The district held a number of information sessions on the budget and members of the Communications Committee of the Citizen's Financial Advisory Committee wrote a series of articles on Larchmont Patch on different facets of the budget.
"The board, administration and PTA leaders worked hard to educate the community about the budget process and the hard work paid off," said Manetta.
Did you vote for or against the budget and, if so, why or why not? Let us know in the comments section below.
Editor's Note: The number of votes Victor Gatti received was corrected. We regret the error.