David D’Amore and Joyel Richardson re-elected to Board of Education
The Greater Johnstown School District community approved the district’s $42,222,306 budget proposal for the 2023-24 school year on Tuesday, May 16 by a vote of 385-184, a margin of 67%.
The 2023-24 school budget reflects a 2.93% ($1,201,235) increase in spending and a property tax levy increase of 4.47% ($503,551), which is at the District’s allowable limit as calculated under the state’s “tax cap” formula. A simple majority (more than 50%) was required to pass the budget.
This marks the third consecutive year that the District’s proposed tax levy increase stayed within the cap, with unanimous voter approval of the budget. The prior three years (2018, 2019 and 2020) the District needed a supermajority vote (60% or more) to exceed the maximum allowable tax levy, but ultimately failed to garner the necessary voter approval. The community participated in re-votes all three years and passed the budget on the second attempt.
Other Items on the Ballot:
- TWO BOE SEATS: Voters re-elected David D’Amore (472 votes) and Joyel Richardson (383 votes) to serve three-year terms as Board of Education members. Both candidates ran unopposed. This election year marks the final phase of reconfiguring the Board from nine members, down to seven. Three seats expire on June 30 this year, but voters only elected two Board members.
- BUS PURCHASE: By a vote of 417-152, voters authorized the District to purchase two 66-passenger buses at a cost not to exceed $320,000, of which $129,148 will be paid for using the District’s Capital Bus Purchase Reserve Fund (savings). The balance of the purchase is included in the 2023-24 budget — the cost of which is offset by transportation aid.
- ESTABLISH CAPITAL RESERVE FUND: By a vote of 396-167, the community also approved establishing a Capital Reserve Fund (savings) not to exceed $5,000,000, for financing future acquisitions or necessary general improvements to the District’s facilities, and transfer the remaining balance of the Bus Purchase Reserve Fund ($1,145,413) to the new Capital Reserve Fund.