Meeting Minutes : Annual Town Meeting Minutes 2009


Annual Meeting Minutes

March 2, 2009 ~ Lothrop School Gymnasium

School Board Members Present: Odell Johnston, Sr., Charles Pitts, Jr., Gerald Bernard, David Lacy. Also Present:  Matthew Harvey, Moderator, Helen McKinlay, Town Clerk, Jean Parker, Recording Secretary. Approximately 35 guests

The Pittsford Town School District Meeting was called to order at 10:10 P.M. by Moderator Matthew Harvey.

Moderator Matthew Harvey read the first paragraph of the School District Warning:

“The legal voters of the Pittsford Town School District are hereby notified and warned to meet at the Lothrop School Gymnasium on March 2, 2009 at 6:30 PM to transact any business not involving voting by Australian ballot.”

Odell Johnston introduced himself as Board Chairman and introduced Board members Dave Lacy, Gerald Bernard, Chuk Pitts, and Superintendent Bill Mathis.  Mr. Johnston announced that this was Dave Lacy’s last night on the Board and that Dr. Mathis was retiring an the end of this year. Dr. Mathis and Dave Lacy both received a warm round of applause.

Barbara Lacy prepared the Powerpoint Presentation of the Pittsford School Directors which was presented by Odell Johnston.  The 2008/2009 budget was $3,700,073 and the proposed 2009/2010 budget is $3,656,252 reflecting a $43,821or 1.18% decrease.

Some of the accomplishments highlighted were the completion of the construction project to enhance security and make the School ADA compliant.  The School’s PA system has been upgraded to provide clearer communication between the office and the classrooms.

Some of the major budget drivers and changes cited to accomplish the net budget decrease included reducing the Library, Music, and French programs to 4 days per week.  A ½ full time equivalent teacher was added for kindergarten, teachers’ raises as per contract and support staff raises at 3.20%.  Budget increases were noted for the RNESU central office assessment, teachers’ early retirement benefits and a small amount for miscellaneous line changes.  There was no increase in health insurance premiums.  Budget decreases came from staff reduction and changes, a lower special education assessment, and lower transportation assessment.

The presentation then explained the 4 factors that determine how the education property tax rate is calculated.

1.     Per “equalized pupil” education spending

2.     State Base Education Amount

3.     State Base Education Tax Rate

4.     Common Level of Appraisal

Of the 4 factors the only one controlled by the School Board is the equalized pupil education spending and this is done through the process of setting the budget.

The presentation went on to explain the formula the State uses to determine the number of equalized vs. actual pupils and the reasons for using equalized pupils. It also went into equalized tax rates, grand lists, and common level of appraisal.

Following the presentation there was a discussion of French vs. Spanish and the value of foreign languages.  Mr. Frost questioned if Spanish was the first language of any of our pupils.  Dr. Mathis replied that Spanish is creeping up.  There was also discussion on the cuts to the library.  All of the students still have access to the library.

Article I           “To hear and act upon the reports of the Town School District Officers.”  The motion to move Article I was made by Bob Miller and seconded by Mark Winslow.  The article passed unanimously.

Article II         “To authorize the Board of School Directors to borrow money in anticipation of taxes to meet the necessary expenses of the Pittsford Town School District.”   The motion to move Article II was made by Bob Miller and seconded by Bob Harnish.  The article passed unanimously.

Article III        “To have presented by the Board of School Directors of the Pittsford Town School District its estimate of expenses for the ensuing year.” Motion to move the article was made by Bob Miller and seconded by Peg Flory.  The article passed unanimously.

Article IV        “To transact any other business proper to be done when met.”  Motion to move article IV was made by Jim Rademacher and seconded by Jocelyn Frost.  There was no other business to be discussed.

Moderator Harvey then read from the warning ‘The meeting shall then be recessed to Tuesday, March 3, 2009 in order to vote on the following articles by Australian ballot.

The motion to adjourn was made by Bob Miller and seconded by Peg Flory.

Moderator Harvey the read the following articles:

Article V         To elect the following officers:

A Town school director for a term of three (3) years.

A Town school director for a term of two (2) years.

A school director for Otter Valley Union High School District #8 for a        term of three (3) years.

Article VI        Shall the voters of the Pittsford Town School District appropriate the sum

of $3,656,252.00 (Three Million Six Hundred Fifty-six thousand two hundred fifty dollars and no cents) necessary for the support of its schools for the year beginning July 1, 2009.  The amount of such sum to be raised by taxes to be reduced by special education revenues, state aid, and other incomes.

Following the reading of  Articles V and VI  the vote on the motion to adjourn was taken and passed unanimously.  The meeting adjourned at 10:50 pm.

Respectfully submitted:                                                 Attest:

Jean Parker, Recording Secretary                               Helen McKinlay, Town Clerk

Matthew Harvey, Moderator