Budget Information

May 16, 2023 voting results:

On May 16, Catskill Central School District voters approved the 2023-24 school budget and elected Deborah Johnson, Ryan Osswald, and Joseph Izzo to the Board of Education.

Catskill Central School District 2023-24 Budget: PASSED 427 yes – 162 no

2023-24 Budget

At its April 21 meeting, the Board of Education adopted the proposed budget for the 2023-24 school year. The budget totals $49,888,670 and carries a projected tax levy increase of 2%, which is under the District’s NYS tax cap of 3.52%. The budget is up a total of $1,312,669, a 2.7% increase from the 2022-23 budget, largely due to inflation and contractual obligations. The District sought efficiency measures and applied $3,576,422 in fund balance to reduce the impact of year-to-year cost increases on the tax levy.

School officials focused on keeping the tax levy increase at 2% while ensuring that students would have the appropriate level of faculty and staff in each building based on need and student enrollment.

  • Program initiatives include the addition of one special education teacher position to support the creation of a Life Skills class for Catskill Middle School students with special needs.
  • Efficiency measures include the elimination of three elementary teacher positions, one physical education teacher position, one business teacher position, one teacher of the visually impaired position, one teaching assistant position, and one teacher aide position from the budget. These budget reductions are the result of lower student enrollment and do not cut student programs. They were largely achieved through retirements, resignations, and not filling vacant positions. The budget also reduces spending for the BOCES Alternative Learning Program due to fewer students requiring this service.

Budget Documents

2023-24 Proposed Budget Presentation

Budget Development Presentations

2023-24 Budget Development Calendar

11/16/22 Budget Calendar presented for Board of Education approval
12/14/22 BOE Meeting – Long Range Plan Presentation – Bernard P. Donegan, Inc.
December 2022 Superintendent of Schools – Review of all detailed
January 2023 Budget requests with all supervisors, development of preliminary budget
01/11/23 BOE Meeting – Budget Workshop 
01/25/23 BOE Meeting – Regular Meeting -Presentation of Catskill Tax Cap History
02/08/23 BOE Meeting – Budget Workshop: State Aid & Revenue Presentation
02/15/23 BOE Meeting – Regular Meeting
03/01/23 Submit 2023–2024 calculation for tax levy limit to NYS Office of State Comptroller 
03/08/23 BOE Meeting – Budget Workshop – Present proposed budget
03/22/23 BOE Meeting – Regular Meeting – Follow up to budget workshop
03/28/23 – 03/31/23 Advertise 1st Legal Notice 45 days prior to vote
04/04/23 Budget Workshop – Adopt budget and property tax report card
04/05/23 BOCES Annual Meeting
04/17/23 Last date for submitting petitions requesting that a proposition be placed on the ballot, which do not have to be noticed in the same manner as the notice for annual meeting, budget vote and election

Last date for filing petitions for School Board membership

4/19/23 BOE Special Meeting 6:30 p.m. CHS library
04/21/23 Special Board Meeting – 5:30 PM CHS Library

Last day for BOE to adopt budget

04/24/23 Property Tax Report Card – submit to SED and local newspaper
04/25/23 Regular Meeting
04/26/23 Budget Statement and required attachments available at each building
05/03/23 BOE Meeting – Budget Hearing 
05/04/23 – 05/10/23 Budget Notice mailed to eligible voters
05/16/23 ANNUAL BUDGET VOTE & ELECTION – 1 P.M. – 9 P.M.

Property Tax Cap Information

Contrary to popular belief, the NYS Property Tax Cap does not cap tax increases at 2 percent. Instead, public schools must use a state formula each year to determine the amount they can increase their tax levies by without having to seek a higher percentage of voter approval for the budget. This threshold is usually different each year and may be above or below 2%. The district must determine its tax cap number and submit it to the state by March 1st of each year.

For 2023, Catskill’s allowable tax levy increase, or “cap,” is 3.52%.

If the year-to-year increase of the District’s tax levy (portion of the school budget funded by property tax) is at or below the number determined by the formula (the “cap”), a simple majority (50% + 1) of voter approval is needed to pass the budget. If the District puts before voters a budget that carries a tax levy increase above the number determined by the formula, a super majority (60%) of voter approval is needed for the budget to pass.

What is a Tax Levy?

The tax levy is the dollar amount that is raised by annual property tax to fund the budget. It provides a portion of the total funding for the budget; the other major source of funding comes from state aid.

What is Fund Balance?

Fund balance is a reserve similar to a savings account; when District expenses are less than expected, or revenues are higher than projected, money remaining at the end of the year is held in the fund balance. The District utilizes fund balance each year as revenue in the budget to minimize spending cuts and hold down tax increases. The District allocated $3,576,422 of fund balance to reduce this year’s tax levy increase.

What Happens if Voters Do Not Approve the Budget?

If voters do not approve the budget proposal on May 16, the Board of Education has the following options: put the same budget or a revised budget up for vote on June 20, 2023, or adopt a contingency budget. If the budget proposition is again defeated on June 20,  the Board must adopt a contingency budget.

A contingency budget holds the tax levy increase at 0%, regardless of inflation, contractual obligations, and other cost increases incurred by the District. However, all state mandated programs, including those not funded by state aid, would need to be retained. A contingency budget also prevents spending on new equipment, except when concerning safety, and limits public use of District facilities. These regulations mean that the Board would need to cut $406,701 from the current budget proposal. Cuts could potentially include program reductions in instructional and non-instructional areas, reductions in interscholastic sports programs, the elimination of all equipment purchases that are unrelated to safety, and reductions in BOCES services.

Voter Qualifications

To be eligible to vote you must be:
• A citizen of the United States 18 years of age or older
• A resident of the Catskill Central School District for a period of 30 days or more directly preceding the date of the vote
• Registered to vote with either the School District or the Greene County Board of Elections

Voter Registration

You must be registered with either the County Board of Elections or the Catskill Central School District to vote on the School Budget and Board of Education Election. The voters of the District have approved a system of walk-in voter registration, available Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on days when the District Offices at the District Clerk’s Office, 343 West Main Street, Catskill, NY.

 Absentee Ballots

Applications for absentee ballots may be applied for at the Office of the Board Clerk, 343 West Main Street, Catskill, New York. Applications for absentee ballots must be received by the Board Clerk at least seven (7) days prior to the election and vote if the ballot is to be mailed to the voter, or the day before the election if the ballot will be picked up personally by the voter at the Office of the Board Clerk.

Current Year’s Budget

The 2022-23 budget was created to continue Catskill Central School District’s current student programs, while reducing the burden to our taxpayers. The budget totals $48,576,001 and carries a projected tax levy increase of 1.85%, which is under the District’s NYS tax cap of 3.52%. The budget is up a total of $2,523,728 (5.48%) from the current year’s budget. The District applied $3,361,796 in fund balance to reduce the tax levy increase. More 2022-23 Budget Information…

2023 Board of Education Election

Catskill’s Board of Education election coincides with the budget vote and takes place Tuesday, May 16 from 1:00-9:00 p.m. in the Catskill High School gym. Learn more on our 2023 Board Election page…