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Budget Season Opens In Glen Cove Schools

Budget review presented at Glen Cove Board of Education meeting

The Jan. 7 Glen Cove Board of Education meeting marked the official opening of budget season.

Deputy Superintendent Kevin Wurtz presented the budget review.

“There are a lot of good things in here, and a lot of things that are troubling,” Wurtz said at the start of his presentation. He noted that the district is in “good fiscal shape” and that the budget has “a lot of moving parts.”

As in years past, the district starts the process with a rollover budget, moving all expenses forward and accounting for known areas of estimated revenues and expenditures. It is a working document for the board members to get an idea of how much money will need to be cut, and which areas to cut from.

“I went through every service, every employee and moved them forward without cuts,” Wurtz explained, “I flat lined the revenue, and will adjust accordingly when we know how much we will receive in state aid.”

He then went through a Power Point presentation highlighting every major category of expense contained in the budget, and pointed out areas that are expected to either go up or down in the 2013-14 school year. While some areas estimated to have a higher expenditure, such as the tax refunds line item at $449,000 and workmen’s compensation at $427,445, can be transferred out of the reserve fund at the board’s discretion, some of the biggest increases are out of the district’s control. 

This year, the teacher’s retirement fund is expected to increase by 1.8 percent, bringing the total cost to the district to about $4.8 million, $1.6 million more than the current year.

One area that might find a savings is transportation; two studies are currently underway to assess the best options for cutting that expense, whether it is staggering start times, changing routes, or eliminating buses.

The rollover budget is projected to be a little over $3 million more for the 2013-14 school year. The current budget is $74,098,650, and the projected rollover budget is $77,130,288. This would mean a 4.87 tax levy increase. To get the tax levy down to 2 percent, the board would have to cut $1,786,296 from the budget.

“School districts are dealing with two emotionally charged items: money and children,” said Dr. Laria. “During budget season, emotions can get to a fever pitch.” He stressed the importance of separating needs from wants when making decisions about the budget, and praised the district for handling the subject maturely over the past two years.

Budget discussions will continue on March 18 and March 20, with the board slated to adopt the budget on April 22. A public hearing will be held May 7, and the vote will take place on May 21.

At the meeting, the 2012 AP Scholars were recognized. 

“I congratulate each and every one of you, and each and every parent for being a role model,” said Dr. Laria. “You represent the best of the best, the brightest of the brightest, and give us great hope for the future.”


News

If Heather Lehrman is not yet a familiar face to local pet owners, her name is likely to soon become a household name to dog lovers and families with young children, as her children’s book, Bullied at the Dog Park, was released this week. The book is based on a real-life incident with her own dog, Herbie, and fans will have a chance to meet her and Herbie at a book signing at Petco in Glen Cove on Saturday, Oct. 25.

 

“I wanted to help get the message out in my own way about the effects of bullying,” says Lehrman, a resident of Great Neck. “This book teaches children valuable lessons about treating all dogs (and people) with respect, and the importance of simple kindness.”

It was Dec. 31, 1999, the last day of the 20th century, and Florence Dolling was preparing an elaborate Thai dinner for a New Year’s Eve celebration in her home in Glen Cove when the phone rang.  It was her doctor reporting that, “Yes, it was breast cancer.” She kept on cooking, attempting to retain as much normalcy as she could muster, knowing that, with the new millennium, there would certainly come change.

 

“I wore a red strapless bustier for the party because I thought I was saying goodbye to the ‘girls’,” she says. “My husband, my sense of humor, and my friends, helped me get through that night,” she recalls.


Sports

On Tuesday, Oct. 7, the Glen Cove Finley Middle School opened their football season with a home game against Thompson Middle School. The game opened with the Glen Cove offense going on a nice drive, which saw quarterback Mike Vaughan score on a 30-yard touchdown run. 

Six North Shore High School athletes competed in the 2014 JCC Maccabi Games and led the New York Delegation to victory, winning gold. The students included Jacob Abramowitz, Brett Bennett, Drew Jacklin, Ben Lerner, Josh Mandell, and Ben Saltzman. The Maccabi Games is a week-long Olympic tournament for Jewish teenage athletes, ages 14-16 years old. It is held in numerous venues across the United States. 

 

Bennett proudly said, “Competing in the Maccabi Games was a unique and thrilling experience for me. It not only was a highly competitive basketball tournament, but it also emphasized the importance of building strong values such as good sportsmanship, leadership, team unity, compassion and respect.

This, for me, was an experience of a lifetime!” 


Calendar

PTA Meeting - October 15

Live Music - October 16

Wine Tasting - October 17


Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
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Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
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