The Wantagh Board of Education adopted a budget proposal Wednesday night that comes in below the tax cap while maintaining current programs and staff.
The $71.7 million spending plan that will be decided by voters on May 15 represents a 2.2 percent increase over the district’s current budget. If approved, the tax levy, which is the total amount that a district must raise in property taxes in order to meet expenses, would increase 1.86 percent. This figure is $194,549 below the district's allowable tax levy limit of 2.2 percent based on a formula under a new tax cap law approved by the State Legislature last year.
The proposed budget keeps current programs, staff and class sizes intact while also adding a new elementary school supervisor. Wantagh Interim Superintendent Dr. Carl Bonuso said having six retirements at the end of the school year was a huge help in allowing the district to avoid staffing cuts in a tough fiscal climate.
"We're excited about the budget not just because of the numbers but the spirit of what is behind those numbers," said Bonuso referring to the district's aim to strike a balance between being fiscally and educationally sound. "We're very much trying to honor the spirit of this fiscally spirited time."
The annual budget hearing is scheduled for May 2 immediately following the 8 p.m. school board meeting in the Auditorium. Voting on the proposed budget is scheduled for May 15 from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. at , and .