April 5 Budget Meeting and BOE Adoption

The North Colonie CSD Board of Education on April 5 unanimously adopted the proposed 2023-24 budget that will go before voters May 16. Prior to adoption, a report and review on the schedules for: staffing changes, equipment, maintenance projects, interfund transfers, and new programs and initiatives was given by Superintendent Skeals and Assistant Superintendent for Business Scott Hoot. 

Mr. Hoot also presented the revenue and expenditures and budget summary prior to the adoption. The full meeting recorded livestream and presentation are also available in addition to this summary.

Mr. Hoot shared that North Colonie is in its third and final year of Foundation Aid and will receive an additional $7.9 million for a total of $8.1 million in total new state aid for the 2023-24 school year. 

The district’s proposed 2023-24 budget is $146.9 million; a $12.1 million increase (8.98%) from 2022-23. The projected tax levy increase is 2.80%. The tax cap is 3.53%. The projected tax rate impact is 1.95%.

“This budget is fiscally sound and continues to provide opportunities for our students,” Superintendent Skeals said. “We continue to expand services to students while being mindful, thoughtful, and fiscally responsible and sound.”

Proposed Staffing
Superintendent Skeals emphasized that the district is always committed to providing every student a well-rounded education and opportunities to contribute to their school as well as later, to society once they graduate

In order to meet the needs of all students, and a large cohort of students with special needs and for whom English is a New Language (ENL), the budget includes 4.0 special education teachers, 4.0 special education teacher assistants, and 3.0 ENL teachers. The latter will work districtwide.

A 1.0 elementary health teacher will help address a post-pandemic need. “Children are struggling, and it is easier to help them make the correct decision in the first place then correct it later,” Superintendent Skeals said. “We have this position at the middle school and need one at the elementary level in a preventative way.”

Superintendent Skeals also reviewed the addition or reorganization of staffing for a grades 6-12 Student Support Center, Human Resources, K-12 Curriculum, and the Communications Office, which were discussed in detail at the April 3 Budget committee meeting. The proposed budget includes 20.4 full-time equivalent staff at a cost of $2 million.

 “This is still a very healthy, balanced budget that provides more support for our students, meets our mandates and adheres to our mission,” Superintendent Skeals said. 

Equipment, maintenance projects, and interfund transfers, which had been presented at budget committee meetings over the last month, were reviewed by Mr. Hoot. The summary of these meetings, as well as the recorded livestream and presentations are on the Budget & Taxes webpage.

The Budget Hearing/Forum is Wednesday, May 3 at 6:30 p.m. in the Shaker Middle School Auditorium. The Budget Vote is Tuesday, May 16, 6 a.m. – 9 p.m. in the District Office, 91 Fiddlers Lane, Latham.