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Voters in Yorktown School District Vote "Yes" on $91.1 Million Budget, Approve Turf Field Proposition

The budget passed in Tuesday's vote.

During the May 17 annual school budget and school board elections, the Yorktown Central School District experienced a lower than usual turnout of voters. In comparison, in 2010 there were 550 fewer voters in total. 

The Yorktown school board's $91.1 million budget passed with a total number of 1,037 votes "yes" in support, while 562 voters were against the budget.

"It's always my hope that the community would invest in the education of our children," Superintendent of Schools Ralph Napolitano said earlier today. "They are the future and will make a difference in their community and world."

Anthony D'Alessandro and Michael Magnani, school board candidates who ran for re-election, were unopposed. D'Alessandro received 1,168 of votes, and Magnani received 1,170 number of votes. 

The budget for 2011-2012 school year is $91,125,000. It includes a 1.99 percent tax levy increase and 1.86 percent tax rate increase. This year’s total budget increases 1.32 percent, or about $1.184 million, more than last year’s budget.

Voters had to vote whether the district should spend $1.2 million, which was approved under a previous bond, to build an at , which passed with 844 votes "yes" and 700 votes "no." 

As part of the budget, there will be a district-wide reduction of 23 to 26 positions inclusive of salaries and benefits. Some of those reductions would be through attrition, decreased enrollment, redeployment of staff, alternative delivery of some programs and excessing.

The districts would continue to save $1.2 million each year the French Hill school is closed. Officials are expecting to lease the French Hill building, which would generate additional revenue. To offset the tax levy, the district will be transferring $1.6 million from the fund balance.

Some of the budget problems and concern, school officials said, come from the fact that the Yorktown school district will be paying out big chunks of money to property owners who have  in court and won. The declining real estate values have led to significant tax challenges in town. Currently, the former Verizon building, located on Route 202 near BJ's, has challenged Yorktown for what they consider "excessive taxing" over a period of 10 years, Napolitano said. That will require nearly $1 million reimbursement, wiping out the district's entire reserve. 

Approximately $850,000 additional certioraris are expected in the next twelve months including BJ’s property, expected to be estimated at $320,000.

School officials initially , which will now be $850,000, Superintendent of Schools Ralph Napolitano said. Since the district has received $148,000 more in state aid than anticipated, he asked board members to add $148,000 to the contingency fund to give him the flexibility to use it if needed. If not used for the 2011-2012 year, the money would be returned to taxpayers, Napolitano said.

Patch , most of whom said education is a top priority for the community. Some voters said they had mixed feelings about the budget, the increasing taxes and the building of the artificial turf field at the high school. 

Total Number of People Voted N/A Number of People Voted "Yes" on Budget 1,037 Number of People Voted "No" on Budget 562 Voted "Yes" on Turf Field Proposition 844 Voted "No" on Turf Field Proposition 700 Votes for Anthony D'Alessandro 1,168 Votes for Michael Magnani 1,170

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