Gov. Andrew Cuomo's executive budget calls for cutting "high tax aid" by close to a third, and East Hampton area school districts stand to suffer for it if the state Legislator signs off.
Across the entire state budget, the amount allocated for high tax aid, funding for school districts with high school property taxes, is being cut $50 million, bringing the total down to $154.7 million, and a greater portion of the aid will be directed to school districts with lower wealth and high property taxes.
While numbers are still preliminary, one school district — Springs — may see an increase, while the rest take a hit.
Springs School District is the only school in the Town of East Hampton that is slated to receive an increase in state aid.
According to the proposed figures, the district will receive $1,246,087 million in assistance next year, $189,822 more than the 2012-13 year — an increase of about 18 percent.
Some of the increase showing in the proposal may not be accurate.
Dominic Mucci, the district superintendent, cautioned that the budget revenue numbers from the state are just an estimate and that are often figures missing entirely.
For instance, the proposal budgets $96,451 under a line item labeled "high cost/excess cost" for 2013-14, but under the current school year, there is no amount listed.
A state aid figure that appears to be more accurate is that of "high tax." The district received $334,391 this year, and is proposed to receive $342,209 next year. "We seem to getting more relief for our community," Mucci said.
Springs is also slated to receive $87,100 for charter school transitional aid — a 100 percent increase, according to the governor's proposal. Mucci explained that the State's formula for calculating that type of aid is generated by district estimates of an increase in the number of students attending a charter school from year to year. "This past year (2011-12) our estimates indicated a significant increase in district students attending charter schools. That estimate is most likely the cause for initiating this increase in aid," he said.
Mucci said that Tom Primiano, the district business administrator, is in the process of reviewing the funding numbers with the state.
"The governor has proposed his budget and now the negotiations will begin with the Legislature and Senate," he said in an email. "Once that has been completed, we’ll have a more realistic number to include in our budget."
Amagansett School District will have to live with 10.3 percent less, or 11.45 percent without building aid being factored in, if the state's proposed budget stands.
Under the proposal, the district will receive $31,404 less than the 2012-13 budget for a total of $274,699 this coming school year.
Amagansett is budgeted to lose $35,000 in high tax aid, for a total of $15,000.
The East Hampton School District is looking at a 3.1 percent decrease in regular aid, or 3.4 percent drop when building aid is taken out of the equation.
The district is slated to receive $2,436,031 in state aid in 2013-14, $77,769 less than it did for the 2012-13 school year.
Again, the biggest hit area is the high tax category with the district standing to lose about $100,577, for a total of $43,104. The district is recouping some funding in categories like BOCES and special services, which is increasing by $6,115 for a total of $253,675.
In Montauk, state aid is set to decrease 9 percent, or $64,991. While "high tax" is decreasing significantly from $169,986 to $50,995, the district will see an increase in its charter school transitional aid from $25,007 to $43,762.
Sag Harbor School District is currently slated to see a 9.2 percent drop in regular aid — but a steeper drop of 10.3 percent when building aid is taken out of the mix.
In total, the district stands to receive $131,896 less than the 2012-13 school year. The new aid package proposed is $1,308,882.
The district is taking the biggest hit when it comes to the category of high tax aid, which is proposed to drop from $165,430 to $49,629.
But a note in the governor's proposed budget states that Sag Harbor's aid was established based on incomplete data, so the number may change when the data is received.
Wainscott, the smallest school district in the Town of East Hampton, does not receive any state aid.