By Dave Kiffer
May 21, 2012
I must correct some incorrect information that was recently published in a letter on your website.
First of all, the Borough is absolutely not proposing a cut in "local" funding for the school district.
The Assembly has already increased the amount of "local" funding for education next year by more than $1 million. A federal program - Secure Rural Schools - has not been funded for next year and the Assembly has voted to replace those funds locally.
The letter writer was specifically referring to a recent change in state law that decreases the amount of money the borough is required to pay for education by slightly more than $1 million. The state will now pay that $1 million directly to the school district.
Since the Borough had already budgeted paying the higher required amount to the school district, it now has to decide how it wants to allocate that money that would have gone to the school district.
Currently, the Assembly has proposed spend more than half of it to fund school maintenance projects. Another $200,000 has been set aside as additional funding for student activities. The remainder - approximately $300,000 - is going to lower the property tax rate .3 of a mill.
So the borough has set aside an additional $1 million local funding this year, and the borough is also spending $700,000 of its education funding requirement reduction directly on education.
That does not amount to a "cut" in "local" funding.
Received May 19, 2012 - Published May 21, 2012
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