To make a $129 million dollar budget work, the Liverpool School Board had to make small cuts across practically every department, eliminate 49 positions and the F.O.C.U.S. program that works with students at risk of dropping out
"I think that a number of things we had projected and hoped would occur were not able to occur, and certainly money was a big part of that," said School Board President Patricia DeBona -Rosier.
The budget was approved by the school board by a vote of 8-1. Former Board President Don Cook voted against it. Before the vote, Cook said he could not support a budget that depended on borrowed money and that the board was already digging itself into a hole for next year.
"In my personal opinion, just kicking the can down the road and expecting that somewhere down that road, the people we're begging and pleading are not going to understand it even though they won't fund it," said Cook.
Many parents in the audience accepted the cuts as a necessary reality and hoped the board would continue to work for long term solutions instead of short term patches. Maryanne Nash said the cuts in state aid were the larger budgetary issue that needed to be addressed.
"Problems that are making it difficult on all the districts not just ours. I think when you look at Baldwinsville, when you look at North Syracuse, everybody is in the same situation," said Nash.
The Liverpool School Board also decided to move ahead with a redistricting plan for fall 2013. The board will look at closing an elementary school as part of that plan. If a school is closed, the district will let parents, teachers and staff know by the end of June.
It will now be up to voters to decide on the school budget. A vote is scheduled for May 15th.