Many have been asking – what can I do to help? Here is something that was brought to us by one of our members that everyone can do! From the comfort of your home…. as many times as you can!
Please take a moment to email Jane Corwin, Michael Ranzenhofer and Chris Collins (links to their contact forms can be found below) and ask them to GET INVOLVED! Our community needs their help – their voice – YOUR VOICE….
I am writing to urge you to get involved to resolve the issue with the Clarence Central School District Budget Gap.
Clarence was the perfectly run district for conservative tax payers.
The state comptroller came in mid last decade and audited all school districts. He told them that they should not be carrying large fund balances and should be lowering taxes to “give back” to the tax payer. That was totally reasonable when NYS was still funding schools and before the Great Recession and stock market losses. Most school districts went with a modest increase every year. Clarence actually significantly LOWERED their tax rates.
That was fine when schools still has the four sources of funding and all were stable.
1. State Aid
2. State grants
3. Federal grants
4. Local property taxes
However, funding from the first three sources has shrunk in the past 3 years.
1. NY State dropped aid to 2007 levels
2. Most state grants cut off
3. Most federal grant programs ended
4. The Cuomo administration has put into place a property tax cap.
Unfortunately, unfunded mandates, impact to pensions due to the Great Recession has resulted in a great increase to expenses and no funding.
To make matters worse, the Special Interest Group Americans For Prosperity has added fuel to the fire by pushing their agenda into the fray. They have no real vested interest in our community except to be able to point to their success in helping to dismantle a formerly successful school district. The amount of coordinated misinformation and negativity that have been directed towards the district is simply incredible.
The Clarence School District is under attack. The only way out is to make cuts in labor. The real losers will be the people that have lost their jobs, the current and future students in the district and the community (because of the loss of reputation and resulting negative impact housing value).
Please help to right the ship! Our community and school district should not be made to suffer because they had worked hard to be the best possible stewards of taxpayer funding.
Chris Collins: http://chriscollins.house.gov/contact
You MUST have your zip code + 4 digit code to contact Chris Collins – If you do not know yours, you can find it on the US Postal Service Site Here.