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Bloated HCSD budget gap was false alarm

Apr 11, 2012 8:00 am
HUDSON -- The additional $1.2 million calculated as general fund expenditures last week by Interim Business Manager Jack McKinney were done so in error, according to a brief statement by Kelly Frank, chair of the Hudson City Board of Education Budget Committee, Tues., Apr. 10. During the course of a 45-minute meeting held in the district's central office, the committee finalized its recommendations for presentation to the full board Wed., Apr. 11. The final proposal calls for the elimination of five teaching positions: one elementary and four grades 7-12 positions (business, reading, foreign language and math). The modified sports program will be cut. No mention was made of the secretarial position previously targeted for elimination, or if it remains on the committee's list of suggested cuts. Along with the reduction in force, the proposal includes a 2.78 percent tax levy increase to accommodate the district's projected $1.3 million budget gap for the 2012-13 school year. Superintendent John F. Howe lauded the committee's work, pointing out the tax levy increase is within the state-prescribed budget cap, and the layoffs are "contained, not widespread." He proclaimed it "a good proposal."