Greenport School District

Greenport School District adopts $21.6M spending plan that raises tax levy 3.11%

The Greenport Board of Education adopted a $21.6 million budget on Tuesday that would increase spending by 5.75% but does not exceed the state property tax cap.

Under the proposal, the tax levy would increase 3.11%, the maximum amount it could without forcing the district to pierce the tax cap, which requires two-thirds voter approval.

Most of the spending increase is being driven by cost hikes in special education, repairs, debt service and health insurance, explained school business official Philip Kenter. The cost increase to the taxpayer is being offset by the use of $485,000 in reserves, a state and federal aid boost of nearly $400,000, PILOT and grant monies, he added.

“So you can see we have a $21,600,000 budget and the tax consequence you the taxpayers will be paying is 16,551,000,” Mr. Kenter told community members at a board of education meeting Tuesday. “We’re paying for what we need and there’s really nothing extra in this budget. It’s covering our expenses.”

Mr. Kenter projected the impact for taxpayers will be an average increase between $112 to $160 over the current school year.

In his presentation, Mr. Kenter highlighted the following projected cost increases:

• +2.22% in salary 

• +3.96% in employee benefits

• +4% for transportation 

• +$500,000 in special education costs

• +$50,000 for fuel oil

The district will host a public hearing on the proposed spending plan May 10. Residents will vote May 17