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Letter: Vote for NHP/GCP Budget

On May 19, 2009, the community will gather at the Manor Oaks School to vote on our school budgets. The New Hyde Park-Garden City Park School District has again presented the community with a reasonable and fiscally responsible budget for the 2009-2010 school year. They have been able to preserve the key component to the success of our children, the staff. New Hyde Park-Garden City Park is well known for being one of the lowest paying districts on Long Island. Yet, we have been very fortunate in our ability to attract and keep outstanding teachers and professional staff who have dedicated their time and energy to the success of our children. The children of this community have consistently performed at 90 percent or better on the state assessments. The members of this community all share in this success as we have supported the budgets which have allowed processional staff to do there jobs: each our children.

The proposed budget is the lowest we have seen in many years coming in at 3.02 percent with a tax levy of 2.47 percent. Yes, times are difficult for all of us, yet the people we try to shelter from these hardships the most are our children.

Irrespective of whether the budget is passed, our taxes will go up. The difference between passed budget and failed budget is an additional $36.97 for the year. We have far more to lose than almost $37 if the budget fails, not the least of which is our reputation as a stellar district and a further decline in property value, as you cannot attract people to a community that does not value education. The children would suffer on multiple levels as sports and scouting (to name a few) would have to pay fees for use of school facilities.

Mr. Katulak and Mr. Frank are also looking to the future planning for the next five years in terms of purchases for technology and saving for a rainy day. Our children are still behind the technology curve. We are still playing catch up for the many years we made no advancements. Their plan is helping to prevent sudden sharp increases in taxes for the citizens of New Hyde Park. The PTAs have heard the budget presentations. We have given both our input and contrary to what most believe, we are probably the harshest critics We have both the most to gain and the most to lose but we as a group have all voted at our individual units to support the school budget.

Mr. Katulak and Mr. Frank have generously made themselves available to explain the proposed budget to any member of the community who has a question. They are accessible; they will discuss with you any concerns you have, just reach out.

NHP-GCP Interschool Council of PTAs: Mary Yuricic and
Theresa Mancini – co-Presidents; Pam Naso,
Garden City Park School PTA Presidents; Nicotine Balducci,
Hillside Grade School PTA President;
Nadine Kraus and Sylvana Pietromonaco,
Manor Oaks PTA co-Presidents; Lisa Friel,
New Hyde Park Road School PTA President,
Kathy Abberton and Joan Zomberg,|
New Hyde Park Memorial PTSA co-Presidents.