Letter from Dr. Cook Providing Clarification to Daily Mail Article

May 10, 2018

Dear Catskill CSD Community:

This morning, I was provided with a copy of the Daily Mail. The front page of the paper read: Catskill CSD budgets 32% salary increase for business admin.; Superintendent says district will save moneyThe headline of the paper startled me as it would do to the average reader. Mr. Richard Moody, Daily Mail reporter, failed to provide his readers with background information to provide clarity regarding the budgetary increase.

Our previous School Business Official was scheduled to earn a salary of $91,000 for the 2017-18 school year. The School Business Official resigned in June 2017 and the District had to find a successor.

Mr. Joe Jimick, an experienced School Business Official, was hired in July 2017. He was hired at a starting salary of $117,500. He is scheduled to earn $120,000 for the 2018-19 school year, which is an increase of 2.128%. This is not a 32% increase. Mr. Jimick’s salary is in the range of other school business officials in surrounding districts.

Mr. Moody also reported that the previous school business official was inexperienced and needed a mentor for support and several school business related functions were outsourced to BOCES. This is accurate, but he failed to include the costs related to having an inexperienced school business official. The District had to pay $31,460 for mentoring services and an additional $65,469 to outsource purchasing and advanced accounting services to BOCES. Now, we have an experienced Business Official and no longer need to spend money on mentoring services and outsourcing purchasing and advanced accounting to BOCES. In his short stint, Mr. Jimick saved the District $800,000 in refinancing outstanding debt.

In closing, I contacted the Daily Mail and requested a correction of the article online and in print.

As always, if you have any additional questions or concerns regarding the budget please do not hesitate to contact me directly at (518) 943-4696.


Dr. Ronel Cook
Superintendent of Schools

Posted in District.