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District Expects Increase in State Aid

The Marcellus Central School District can expect to receive a 3 percent increase in state aid from last school year, according to estimates in the $212 billion state budget approved by legislators this week.

Marcellus is set to receive $15.8 million in aid, up from $15.4 million last year. Those figures include $8.7 million in foundation aid, an increase of 3 percent from last year.

“We’re very pleased with the support shown by our legislators this budget cycle,” School Business Administrator Anthony Sonacchio said. “It has been nearly 14 years since New York state schools were promised adequate funding via the Foundation Aid formula. This week we received word that legislators intend to fully fund this legislation over the next three years. We’re finally seeing light at the end of a very long tunnel.”

Other lines in the aid runs include $1.46 million for BOCES, $1.92 million for transportation and $3.22 million in building aid. Each of these aid categories are expense driven and therefore fluctuate depending on the needs from year to year.

After district officials finalize a financial plan for Marcellus, the Board of Education will approve a budget and send it to voters for their consideration at the May 18 vote and election. A public hearing will be held May 10 at 7 p.m. at the high school.

Marcellus’ 2020-21 budget totaled $37.8 million, a 0.6 percent increase from 2019-20. It passed with a vote of 1,594-731. The 21-22 budget to budget increase is expected to be closer to 2.5 percent, largely impacted by increases in expenditures related to addressing learning gaps caused by the pandemic. These expenses will be supported by revenue from federal monies pledged to schools for this purpose.

“We continue to wait for additional guidance regarding how to access those funds, as well as exactly how they can be utilized,” Superintendent Michelle Brantner said. “They will certainly go a long way over the next few years to get our students back on track.”


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