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Fredonia school board still looking at $900K gap

March 27, 2013

Although further spending was cut in the third draft budget, Fredonia School District is still looking at an additional $879,689 in cuts to be under the tax cap....

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Mar-28-13 9:52 PM

"If the FCS parents and taxpayers want to invest and spend for a educational experience the want for their children, where their district is 3rd top rated district in the county, then its their business."

This from a district that thinks it's first in the state. FCS is a mess, overspends on the most absurd (I.e. unnecessary building additions....that result in catastrophic structural failure a few years into their lifespans), brags about its quality of service while undergoing massive declining enrollment with no supporting evidence of said "quality", teachers that sext students, etc., etc. tell you what. You find that 990K by your*****selves. Have some ba**s and make a proper decision for the taxpayers for once, and don't blow the "it's for the kids!" smoke while holding your hands out like you were Oliver Twist. DiFonzo: GFY.

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Mar-28-13 11:44 AM

@ Jimmy,I'm guessing the reason it was not mentioned was because this article is about closing a $900k gap, not who's who in the football coaching staff. Positions like that are always posted internally first, interviews being offered to internal employees first and then if there are no qualified candidates there is an external posting. Current employees are always given precedence. The coach that was chosen is a wonderful coach and has qualified experience. The school followed proper protocol for the hiring process. @Becca, my thoughts exactly. There is too much wasteful staff. I don't want to see people lose their jobs either, but it's time for the school to make some responsible decisions regarding the future of the students. Not every level needs 2 principals (at roughly $100,000 ea) and multiple support staff for administrators, directors, business office, etc.

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Mar-27-13 9:59 PM

Soon there will be no place to work around here, let's see how they handle that shortfall. Coaches? That good ol boy system will never change Jim, it runs rampant in all districts. The burden on tax payers is becoming so heavy, it will soon be unsustainable. Not just in Fredonia. Dunkirk may have not raised taxes in 3 years.....they rely heavily on pilot monies from NRG, say what you will....Dunkirk is in SERIOUS trouble in the coming years if the plant can't be saved & so is the county.

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Mar-27-13 8:17 PM

When high taxes are related to economic prosperity, they are sort of intertwined, wouldn't you say? Property taxes for schools are continually rising, and at a rate much higher than any property taxes generally levied by local government. Social Security taxes have remained the same for an awfully long time, and are not the issue for the elderly that property taxes can be. The elderly are not paying social security taxes on their social security. They are paying property taxes at the full rate. And per capita includes children, so a 4 person household might 5600? And if the children move away, and one parent passes away, that widower or widow is stuck paying that $5600 all by themselves. Agreed? And your ethnic slur is well noted and not appreciated, not that you'd care, but it says an awful lot about you. In the real world out there,taxes are a huge issue for the average person discussing the economy of New York State and the United States. Split hairs all you like.

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Mar-27-13 5:43 PM

I notice no mention in this article commenting on the hiring process of coaches that was brought up in last nights meeting. No mention on how the board never interviewed prospective applicants for heading coaching positions, passing up on more qualified coaches. It would figure that trying to give our children best possible options is not a concern of most.

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Mar-27-13 5:21 PM

Christuufuu -- my Econ Masters notwithstanding, property taxes & all taxes) are a political function & not economic. Either the majority of voters in a school district want them to pay for their schools or not.

As a cohort, the elderly vote in more numbers and frequently than any other & the property tax funding remains & usually increase. Democracy, eh? My comment was political not economic. But...yes, property taxes are regressive. So are Medicare and SS/FICA taxes, that benefit the elderly: for every SS recipient, 2.1 workers are being taxed for it. NY/Chau property taxes are $1,400 per capita/yr, where FICA is 2.21 times that amount.

So, non-elderly taxpayers are paying their property taxes, and paying them for elderly folks. Is that fair?

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Mar-27-13 4:41 PM

FCS has seen a decrease in state aid but so has many other schools in this state. My school taxes are extremely costly as I'm sure most residents are in this district. I agree that the cutting needs to start at the administration level. With the high school, middle school and elementary school in one building is there a true need for a principal and assistant principal at each level? Directors, assistant directors, administrative secretaries.......I hate to see anyone's job in jeopardy but come on. Something that Fredonia needs to take a VERY close look at are the number of children that attend Fredonia Central who live somewhere else. OH yes, giving false addresses, children being dropped off by the bus at bogus locations and being picked up by parents who do not live in the fredonia district and do NOT pay taxes here. I'm sure those families could generate some revenue.

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Mar-27-13 2:33 PM

Leave in large quantities......just where do you think they would go?? Unless they have money and go to a private school there is no where to go. As for Dunkirk getting more money it's how you spend it. They could just spend more and cry the same song as Fredonia.

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Mar-27-13 1:15 PM

In general, only people with money have the luxury of moving just for a better school system. Dunkirk, due to being a CITY school district, gets way more state aid than Fredonia does. (Another reason to consider merging Dunkirk and Fredonia into one CITY school district)But Fredonia set itself up years ago with less than intelligent decisions, from enlarging the High School while class sizes were declining, to keeping the football field downtown requiring the expense of locker rooms. But that being said, anyone who can and does read can readily see that this is a statewide issue, not just a Fredonia one. I've never understood some of the personalized and nasty comments directed at local officials as if Fredonia was the only district with money issues. No district can claim perfection in its decisions and operations. Yet even if we had a county wide district, I doubt the system would be more affordable.

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Mar-27-13 10:33 AM

Consolidation of administration services would be the largest impact for saving money. Eliminating programming doesn't help the district. Course schedules and extracurricular activities are what drive parents to choose a district. Start cutting in those areas and parents will leave the district in great quantity. Cost cutting efforts need to start in excess administration and support staff, not eliminating teachers, aides and programs. There is no benefit to taking funding away from student activities to further employ wasteful, meaningless high paying admin and admin support positions. Two secretaries/level is plenty. How many clerical positions, tech support positions, business office, etc staff does one small district need? Strip those areas thin.

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Mar-27-13 10:01 AM

Stop blaming it on the state. Funny Dunkirk isn't having a problem with no tax increase for 3 yrs in a row. What's you're problem John & DiBonzo?? Freeze all teacher salaries and cut administration for openers. I agree with Christopher schools should not be supported by property taxes. It should be tuition or some kind of income tax. VOTE NO ON THE BUDGET!!! We may still have an increase but it will send a message. Fredonia approves the budget year after year. This sends the message they are happy with what they are doing. You all complain about school taxes have the guts to vote NO!!

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Mar-27-13 9:35 AM

Your totally right on Pandora--Its the power that scares the general people - Stand people and say NO--!!! But I guess that how badly the Power has everyone scared

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Mar-27-13 9:34 AM

The real issue is the source of school funding, the property tax. That's a nonsensical, blatantly unfair and regressive tax that based on an outdated idea that all property owners are wealthy. Schools should be funded with an income tax or some sort of dedicated sales tax, but not property taxes. Relative to Dcronlg's comment, LOTS of the elderly do NOT want to fund the schools at the level they're at because quite simply they can't afford it. Should they lose their homes? This isn't the first time your bragging rights to a Masters in Economics is hugely suspect. The expense of any school is one subject. How you pay for them is another. The two issues are not the same by any means.

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Mar-27-13 8:45 AM

This nonsense needs to stop. We need create county wide school systems throughout NY and create a pay scale for teachers across the state. This creates a better way to keep cost down from both the teacher salaries and the administrative costs.

One school board, one superintendent and one pay scale for teachers.

This will never happen because people worry about losing their town identity and the local BOE's don't want to lose their power.

If we want to have a chance of reducing costs, then this is the path we must follow. I have seen this model and it works very well.

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Mar-27-13 8:41 AM

If the FCS parents and taxpayers want to invest and spend for a educational experience the want for their children, where their district is 3rd top rated district in the county, then its their business.

Similar to other districts' taxpayers -- if they'd rather not spend and are willing to compromise the educational experience for their kids, then so be it.

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Mar-27-13 7:47 AM

They Dont care--The board is up and above the tax payers --They all make big money - Cut what ever needs cut- Fredonia the shineing star of the state of NY has to stop--

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Mar-27-13 7:05 AM

I guess difonzo better find another 900k to cut. Cut sports, after school programs, positions, etc. You think FCS could actually not have a tax increase oh but wait FCS thinks so highly of itself that they can't bring themselves to cutting back. If this budget gets shot down it won't matter anyhow because our taxes will be going up. Guess I should have bought the dump down the road with the single wide trailer with the hot water tank exposed outside if I wanted less taxes. 15 years and counting then NY will never see anymore tax money from me.........

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