Massena budget approved in 330-71 vote, Baines wins seat on school board
Wednesday, May 16, 2018 - 11:45 am

MASSENA -- Voters approved the 2018-19 Massena Central School District budget 330-71 on Tuesday.

Amber Baines, the only candidate running for a vacant Board of Education seat, received 346 votes. Write-in candidates also received several votes -- four for Athena Curley and one each for Jim Hidy, Chris Delosh, Paula Beckstead, Christine Millhausen and Haig Bogosian.

There was a ballot proposal to continue appointing a student representative to the school board as a non-voting ex-officio member. That passed 331-61.

The $54,442,331 budget will raise $14,835,434 in taxes, just under one percent more than last year.

The budget will add some positions and pay for more school supplies. At the high school, it will fund an English language arts teacher for the Freshman Academy. The program is to help ninth-graders transition to high school and includes lessons in writing, reading, study and digital citizenship skills. The budget will also pay a stipend to a teacher who also will take on the Freshman Academy advisor role. There will be a new special education teacher at the junior high and a literacy intern per elementary building, if the voters next month approve the budget.

Other items included in the budget include more bus hours for high school college and career visits, more supplies for junior high and elementary teachers, a speech pathologist for students age 4 and under, a part-time school psychologist from BOCES, an IT support specialist, a seven-passenger van, and a contractual and supplies budget. All of the positions and items total $453,600, according to a recent presentation from Brady.

The budget will also create a $300,000 capital reserve account to save money for future projects.