Second vote results in approval

NORTHVILLE – Voters in the Northville Central School District on Tuesday approved the 2014-15 school budget, which the district proposed for a second time after voters rejected the plan in May.

Voters approved the budget – which includes a 3.8 percent tax-levy increase – in a vote of 388 to 238 with a 62 percent supermajority. The proposal required at least a 60 percent supermajority because the budget exceeds the tax-levy cap of 1.12 percent. The budget passed by a 12-vote supermajority.

“I am thrilled, I am so happy,” Interim Superintendent Debra Lynker said after the vote count Tuesday.

On May 20, the first $10.6 million budget proposal received majority approval in a 255-179 vote, but the measure fell five votes short of the needed supermajority.

Almost 200 more voters turned out for Tuesday’s election.

“Every vote counts, as you can see,” Lynker said. “It is a supermajority. I am happy.”

The tax-levy increase amounts to $217,000.

The budget adds a teaching assistant, a computer information officer, extra-curricular stipends, software for students, materials, and junior varsity softball and baseball.

The budget also includes money to pay for a new bus. Voters approved the bus purchase May 20. The state will pay for 46 percent of the $113,000 bus cost, district officials said previously.

Lynker, who is stepping down in July because the district has hired Superintendent Leslie Ford, said it felt like she is ending her service to the district on a high note.

However, she said future budget proposals may exceed the state-imposed tax cap.

“We are going to need these 60 percent supermajorities,” Lynker said. “It is very important people come out and vote.”

Jim Bierlein, Northville Board of Education member, said he was happy to see the budget pass.

“Sixty percent is really hard to get in a school budget vote,” Bierlein said.

Sheldon Ginter, Board of Education president, said he felt the district is moving forward.

Earlier this year, Northville school voters rejected a proposed merger with the Mayfield Central School District.

Laurie Driscoll, who said she voted against the proposed merger, approved the budget Tuesday.

“I decided if I was not going to be willing to merge, I needed to be willing to spend the money. They are not asking for anything out of control,” Driscoll said.

Delos Woodruff said he voted against the budget proposal both times.

He said he felt the district is not giving an accurate picture of the fiscal situation and the district’s taxpayers have a heavy tax burden.

“I have to cut my budget every time something goes up,” Woodruff said.