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Pocantico Hills 2013-14 School Budget Would Add Staff

A proposed 2013-14 school budget in Pocantico Hills would raise the tax rate and add a net total of three teachers to the district.
A proposed 2013-14 school budget in Pocantico Hills would raise the tax rate and add a net total of three teachers to the district. Photo Credit: Meredith Shamburger

Updated 4:55 p.m. Saturday, March 2, with correction positions added and tax rate increase percentages.

POCANTICO HILLS, N.Y. – A proposed 2013-14 budget in the Pocantico Hills School District would raise the tax rate and add a net total of three full-time equivalant positions (FTE's) to the district.

Pocantico Hills officials discussed next year's budget during a meeting Tuesday. The proposed budget would be a 2.08 percent increase from last year's budget.

Greenburgh residents would see a projected 4.02 percent tax rate increase, while Mount Pleasant residents would see a 2.49 percent tax rate increase. The budget would raise the tax levy by 2.34 percent, which is under the state-mandated tax cap limit.

Last year's budget saw a 2.12 percent budget increase that maintained all programs and maintained a $3 million reserve for property tax assessment challenges, called certioraris..

Officials would add several staff positions, which would add up to an estimated six full-time teachers: a library teaching assistant, part-time teaching assistants, monitors, a psychologist, a math tutor and assistant pool directors.

School officials also discussed staff reductions, which would add up to an estimated three full-time positions: a S.T.E.M. Program teacher, a special education teacher, a principal secretary, a CSE secretary, a security guard and teacher aides.

One problem the district faces, school officials noted in their presentation, is declining enrollment.

Enrollment increased between 1999 and 2004, but officials say that pre-K through eighth-grade enrollment has been declining about 15 percent.

“In order to fulfill the organizational goal of the District, the District will need to improve and streamline all of the District’s organizational systems and structures to ensure efficient and effective operation of the District in meeting the District’s goals and the needs of the students, staff, parents and the community,” officials note in the budget presentation.

Several more discussions of the budget are planned:

  • March 5 at 8 p.m.: Board of Education Meeting
  • March 12 at 7:30 p.m.: Neighborhood Meeting at the Westchester Hills Condominium
  • March 19 at 8 p.m.: Board of Education Meeting
  • TBA: PTA Draft Budget Presentation
  • TBA: Neighborhood Meeting at the Pocantico Hills Fire Department
  • April 9: Board of Education Meeting
  • April 23: Board Adopts Proposed Budget
  • May 14: Public Hearing On Proposed Budget
  • May 21: Public votes on budget

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