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Oct 23, 2019 9:56 AMPublication: The Southampton Press

Tuckahoe Schools Lower Levy By $600k

Tuckahoe Common School District Superintendent Leonard Skuggevik announced this week that the tax levy will decrease by $600,000. GREG WEHNER
Oct 23, 2019 9:56 AM

Tuckahoe School officials announced this week that the district is lowering the 2019-20 tax levy from a previously approved amount by $600,000.

The proposed tax levy of $19,548,138 that was approved by school district residents in May is getting reduced to $18,948,138, equating to a change from a tax increase of 2.9 percent to a decrease of 0.26 percent.

“This is from last year’s money,” Superintendent Leonard Skuggevik said on Monday. “We had a surplus of money at the end of the year after all of our auditing was done, because we were able to get other things from New York State that we were able to apply for. Because we were able to monitor spending and ensure that we didn’t spend anything we didn’t need to, we were able to save all of that money we had budgeted for with contingencies.”

The state replenishes certain things the district spends money on, he said, and his team went through to make sure everything was being received from the state. For example, money to educate homeless students and getting paid back for free and reduced lunches.

Mr. Skuggevik also said the district was able to decrease future budgets by paying off long-term debt associated with an energy performance contract. The contract, he said, was connected to work that would reduce energy costs, and by paying off the debt, the district will be saving approximately $37,000 per year in payments of principal and interest.

Over the course of the loan, he said, payoff equates to about $41,000 in interest.

“This has been made possible by maximizing other sources of revenue and monitoring and decreasing spending when possible,” Mr. Skuggevik said. “We will continue to be fiscally responsible as we provide our students with a quality education.”

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