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From the desk of Dr. Charles Murphy: March 29, 2012

Annually, the budgetary process ebbs and flows in many different directions before the board of education formally adopts the proposal for the community referendum. The 2012-13 budget development process followed this traditional pattern – rising and falling – until the Island Trees Board of Education adopted the final proposal on Tuesday night.

Although we had very serious concerns about meeting the 2 percent tax cap when the process first began during the summer of 2011, the board met the challenge and was able to get under the tax cap with a tax levy of 1.99 percent.

A great accomplishment considering that the district lost a substantial amount of school revenue this year, $472,000, as well as being given new state mandated increases to our expenditure budget. Fortunately, we were able to meet the new tax cap law without a significant impact on our student programs and services. Although there were a few minor programmatic changes, in general, our educational program will mirror the current one.

We will have the details in our budget newsletter scheduled to be delivered to our residents in May. In the meantime, if you have any budgetary questions, please feel free to contact me.