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Baldwin approves $99M school budget By Joan Delaney The Baldwin Board of Education approved a proposed 2006/07 expendi-' ture budget of $99,807,330, which it will present to voters on May 16. It represents a budget to budget spending increase of \o 6.27 percent over last year and an estimated tax.levy increase of 6.68 percent over last year. A tax levy is the amount of money which must be raised by taxes. That tax levy number may change, however, pending the outcome of the state's budget negotiations. As is its policy, the Baldwin board at this point in the process uses the governor's proposed state aid allotment, which is presently < $19,871,775. It is expected, however, that state aid will be higher once a compromise is reached with the legislature, whose proposals are higher. The board promises that any increased state aid will be used to lower the tax levy. At the final budget hearing on March 29, board members discussed several specific expenditure items which they said they wanted to explore further after the prior two budget hearings. Responding to community wishes, which were reflected in a petition of 329 names, the board agreed to place a fulltime registered nurse at each school. Prior to this, some schools shared a nurse



and had only a nurse's.aide for a portion of the day. Resident-Sarah Rafalowitz had raised the issue at several prior board meetings and she spearheaded the petition drive. After the board approved the allocation, she thanked them for responding. What surprised her and seemingly several of the Aboard members during extensive discussion was that the actual difference in cost from the original proposed allocation was only $13,000. That small difference resulted because the original proposed budget already contained a recommendation for one additional nurse and one additional nurse's aide. Since that aide can now be eliminated, along with two existing aide positions, the resulting difference was only the cost of 1.5 additional nurses less the cost for the three aides. That net amount was only a $13,000 difference for salaries. Board members noted that "fiscally, the decision is a no-brainer." Board member B.A. Schoen pointed out that the decision is correct "morally, fiscally, and legally." The presence of a registered nurse in each building also eliminates the need to assign and bus a student who has medical needs requiring a nurse to a school which has a full-time nurse. Other expenditure items were also dis-


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Saturday, April 8

• Book Bug Club. 10 a.m., ETS Youth Division, 429 Atlantic Avenue. • ESOL/GED, 9 a.m., CR: Chess For Kids, 10 a.m., DAR, 12 p.m., William Cullen Bryant, 2:30 p.m., at the Freeport Memorial Library; • Concert: Violin, 2:30 p.m., at the Freeport Memorial library.

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. • Kid's Cafe, Friday evening supper for local families in need, 5:15 p.m., ETS Youth Division, 87 Pine Street. • ESOL/GED, 9 a.m., Talking About Literature, 12 p.m., Voices From The Interior (poetry), 2:30 p.m., AA Daily Gratitude, 4 p.m., Girl Scouts, 6 p.m., Afr. -Atl. Genealogical Soc. at Freeport, 7 p.m., at the Freeport Memorial Library.

Sunday, April 9


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Monday, April 10 • ESOL/GED, 9 a.m., VITA, 10 a.m., Retired Teachers, 10 a.m., AA Daily Gratitude,'4 p.m., CR: Girl Power (Grades 7-9), 6 p.m., Central Nassau, 6 p.m., Purple Cow, 7 p.m., at the Freeport Memorial Library. •Freeport Village Court in session, Judge Cacciatore presiding, 7 p.m., 40 North Ocean Avenue. Court watchers are welcome. • Bingo at Congregation Bnai Israel, 7:45 p.'m., 91 North Bayview Avenue. • Freeport Board of Trustees, Organization Night, Village Hall, 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 11

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cut last year. The board also approved an assistant track coach, noting that his responsibilities include supervision and safety as well as coaching. Although the board has completed its task of preparing the 2006/07 expenditure budget, residents must now await decisions by the state and county which will affect the revenue portion of the budget and the tax impact. In addition to the impact of state aid, the actual tax impact on residents is affected by changes in the assessed valuation of the community and the base proportion allotted to each of four taxing groups - Class 1 and 2 residential, Class 3, utilities, and Class 4, commercial and other. Changes in percentages among those four groups as well as the overall assessed value of the community can ultimately affect the individual property owner, who must pay his portion of the overall assessment for his property's tax class. Gene Levenstien, interim assistant superintendent for business, said that the budget brochure, which will be sent to every resident, will explain that process. Both the school and library .budget

Friday, April 7

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cussed. Superintendent Robert Britto said that after careful review and projections, he was recommending that several items be removed - one half of a language, speech and hearing teacher (one . additional teacher is included), a portion of the costs for the elementary level science kits, an additional assistant basketball coach, and an additional school psychologist - for a savings of $125,937. The board discussed other items, electing to eliminate the request for a seventh grade, football team at a cost of $8,800. Board members Mary Clark, Mary Jo O'Hagan and James Scannell noted that while they would like to approve the allocation, they could not, given the cuts to other program-related requests. The board also eliminated the recommendation to increase the per pupil allotment for textbooks at the elementary level, noting that both the middle school and high school allotments were not increased. Additionally, the elementary level will be receiving special allotments for leveled reading libraries (3-5) and math textbooks and workbooks. Furniture for the music program was approved, since that allocation had been

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• Archbishop Molloy Council # 1974, Knights of Columbus, Our. Holy Redeemer Church basement 7:30 p.m. • ESOL/GED, 9 a.m., CR: Mothers Center, 9:30 a.m., Great Books, 1:30 p.m., CR: Homework Express, 4 p.m., VITA, 6 p.m., Audubon Society, 7 p.m., at the Freeport Memorial Library. Wednesday, April 12 • Freeport Village Court in session, Judge Cacciatore presiding, 9 am, 40 North Ocean Avenue. Court watchers are welcome. • ESOL/GED, 10 a,m., Current Events in Perspective, 1 p.m., AA Daily Gratitude, 4 p.m., CR: Tween Cafe (Grades 5-6), 5:30 p.m., CR: Homework Express, 6 p.m., Soul With-Heart, 7 p.m., Camera Club, 7 p.m., Stress Workshop, 7 p.m., at the Freeport Memorial Library. •Enrico Fermi Lodge, OSIA, 7:45 p.m., Fireman's Exempt Hall, 9 N. Long Beach Road. • Freeport Exchange Club, 12:30 p.m., Bedell's West Wind • Board of Directors, Sanitary District Number 2, 2080 Grand Avenue, Baldwin, 5 p.m.

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Thursday, April 13 • Freeport Rotary Club, 7 p.m., at the Imperial Diner. • News, Notables and the Nation, 2:30 p.m., Freeport Chess Club, 6:30 p.m., Global Associates, 6:30 p.m.,at the Freeport Memorial Library. • • Freeport Environmental Commission, 8 p.m., Village Hall . • Freeport Village Planning Board,, 7:15 p.m., Village Hall. • Explorer Post 406, Freeport Fire Department Headquarters, 15 Broadway, 7 p.m.

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