Lake George school budget up 3.5 percent

LAKE GEORGE - The Lake George Central School Board has endorsed a $19.775 million budget for 2009-10, and the sum reflects a 3.45 percent increase in spending, but a 3 percent hike in tax levy, school officials said Tuesday.

The spending plan, unlike those in neighboring districts, calls for no cuts to personnel or programs.

The budget will go up for public vote May 19, school district Business Administrator Lyn Derway said.

"We tried to be as cost-efficient as possible while maintaining all current programs and positions," she said.

The budget calls for an increase in expenditures of $659,150.

The percentage of levy increase is lower than the hike in expenses primarily due to enhanced revenues, according to school records.

The annual tax levy increase in the Lake George School District has decreased steadily, year by year, since 2003-2004 when it was 8.46 percent.

Two board seats will be up for a vote - the positions held by Wendy Matthews and Robert Bolen. Matthews, who was first elected in 2003, has decided not to run again, school officials said. Bolen is seeking re-election. Virginia Etu has submitted a petition for one of the open seats on the board.

The plan calls for a 5 percent increase in instructional costs and a 4.21 percent increase in general support, but a 3.3 percent decrease in transportation costs, according to school records.

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