Voters approve 2024-25 Watervliet school budget, elect two to school board

Thank you voters!

Watervliet City School District residents Tuesday approved the proposed $41,394,000 budget for the 2024-25 school year by a margin of 69 percent, or 93 yes votes to 41 no votes.

Two candidates were elected to two open seats on the Board of Education. Heather Soroka was re-elected to the school board with 114 votes. Kyle Daniels was elected to a first term with 108 votes. Both will serve three-year terms on the Board of Education beginning July 1, 2024.

The 2024-25 budget increases overall spending by $3.6 million, or 9.6 percent, compared to the current year’s budget. It maintains all academic programs and instructional services, while providing additional supports and opportunities for students.

Voters also approved a proposition allowing the school district to establish a Capital Reserve Fund not to exceed $10 million for future construction projects and other major capital purchases over a 10-year term. The capital reserve is a separate account funded by annual transfers of unexpended operating funds. As such, it will not increase local taxes. Funding from the reserve cannot be spent without public approval.

The budget yields a tax levy increase of 1.89 percent, which is well below the district’s tax levy limit under New York’s tax “cap” law. As such, a simple majority of voters was needed to approve the budget.