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Story - Education

Apr 21, 2010 2:09 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Hampton Bays school budget includes 18.5 percent tax hike

Apr 21, 2010 2:09 PM

HAMPTON BAYS­—School property taxes in Hampton Bays are expected to skyrocket 18.5 percent next year under the proposed $43.8 million budget unanimously adopted by School Board members Tuesday night, even though overall spending will only increase about 2.8 percent.

At the meeting, Business Administrator Larry Luce explained that the sharp increase in the projected tax rate—which is expected to jump from $9.21 to $10.91 per $1,000 of assessed value—is due to a number of outside factors, including a drop in state aid and other revenues, and the recent reassessment of properties in the district by Southampton Town. The town said that properties in the district will be worth about 10 percent less next year, meaning that district taxpayers’ assessments are expected to go down, according to Mr. Luce.

Mr. Luce also stressed the distinction between the tax rate and the actual tax dollars that residents will pay. Because properties in Hampton Bays will be worth less, the actual amount of taxes that residents are expected to pay will probably not increase by 18.5 percent, Mr. Luce said.

This year, a taxpayer whose home is worth $500,000, the district average, is paying around $4,605 in school property taxes. A taxpayer whose home is still assessed at that level can expect the taxes to increase by $850, to $5,455, next year.

But Mr. Luce emphasized that the assessed value of an average home in Hampton Bays will drop from $500,000 to $450,000 next year. In that scenario, a taxpayer would see the school property tax increase by about $304 next year, or 6.7 percent over the current year.

The adopted spending plan, which must still be approved by district taxpayers on Tuesday, May 18, does not call for any layoffs and will not cut any programming, according to school officials. In fact, the spending plan includes funding for a total of five new sports teams at the middle and high schools due to growing student demand.

On Wednesday morning, School Board President Doug Oakland, who is running for reelection next month, said the board made a point not to cut programs at the district’s three schools. “That’s my emphasis—keeping the programs running that we have in place, with no layoffs, and minimal budget increases from budget to budget,” Mr. Oakland said.

“That was one of the goals, actually, when we started the budget development,” Mr. Luce added in a separate interview Wednesday morning. “We didn’t want to cut programs and we didn’t want to have layoffs.”

Mr. Luce said the School Board does not yet have a backup plan if voters reject the proposed budget next month. If that happens, the district can choose to either make changes to its budget proposal and put it up for a second vote, or adopt a contingency budget. A district must automatically adopt a contingency budget the second time a spending plan is rejected.

The allowed spending increase of a contingency budget is mandated each year by the consumer price index. This year, a contingency budget would probably mean a spending increase of zero percent, Mr. Luce said. He described that option as “devastating” and said that it would probably mean layoffs and program cuts.

And factoring in the town reassessment and loss of revenue, Hampton Bays homeowners can still expect to see a 14.8-percent hike in the school property taxes next year, according to Mr. Luce.

As a result of the reassessment, the district is anticipating a 10-percent drop in payments in lieu of taxes, or PILOTs, from Southampton Town. The figure is expected to decline from $642,237 this year to $578,013 next year. State aid is also expected to fall by 11 percent, from about $5 million this year to about $4.5 million this year.

The district will also lose out on interest revenue. Last year, the district earned $632,937 in interest on capital funds for the new middle school, which opened two years ago. The last of those capital funds were spent this year, so that revenue stream has completely dried up, Mr. Luce said.

All of these developments will shift the burden further onto the taxpayers, Mr. Luce said.

“We can’t control the state cuts, we don’t control the PILOTs, we’re not the tax assessor,” Mr. Luce said. “And a lot of these things are outside our control.”

On Wednesday morning, Eve Houlihan, a Hampton Bays resident who is a member of the Hampton Bays Civic Association, sounded shocked when she learned about the steep tax rate increase.

“Unfortunately, there appears to be a growing inverse relationship between the school tax burdens, which are obviously increasing, and what appears to be an alarming downward trend in performance,” Ms. Houlihan said. She said that she was referring to statistics that show that the percentage of Hampton Bays students receiving Regents diplomas had dropped since 2007.

On Tuesday night, Mr. Luce said that while the percentage of students receiving Regents diplomas had dropped, the total number of graduates had increased dramatically since 2007, and students had been scoring higher on Advanced Placement tests.

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We need people who are capable of dealing with tough choices. Teachers' union, parents wanting it all for the kids, etc. need to be told enough is enough. We have buried ourselves into debt and need to realize the time has come to just say no to adding on more programs, cutting back on full day kindergarten, teachers' salaries frozen. We are living in tough times and facing the reality of today's financial problems at all levels has to be addressed. No longer can we bury our heads in the sand...take ...more
By BeachGal (72), Hampton Bays on Apr 23, 10 12:35 PM
2 members liked this comment
Some simple math for you, Beach Gal:
Vote Yes: Pay $307 taxes
Vote No: Pay $150 taxes

You vote No, and it will take years to recover.

Taxes will go up, because the world is in economic turmoil, and it's rolling downhill from the fed gov, state gov, and town gov.

We are all victims here. You vote no, students will pay the ultimate price, and so will HB homeowners. A No vote will kick HB back to its reputation of old.

Beach gal, pull YOUR head out of the ...more
By wakemanfoster (6), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 7:41 AM
1 member liked this comment
Simple math..I get it. My point is we need to start looking very carefully on ways to cut budgets otherwise we are just digging ourselves deeper and we will NEVER recover. My head isn't in the sand...I am looking clearly at a problem that needs a solution and throwing more money at it..isn't going to make the problems go away.
By BeachGal (72), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 4:10 PM

Brentwood's teacher union, LI's biggest, OKs pay cuts
April 26, 2010 By JOHN HILDEBRAND john.hildebrand@newsday.com

In the season's most substantial contract concession yet, Long Island's biggest teacher union has agreed to give up next year's raises as well as take temporary pay cuts.

The $11 million in givebacks by Brentwood teachers come as school districts across Long Island prepare to release ...more
By Payfreeze (2), Hampton Bays on Apr 27, 10 1:21 PM
1 member liked this comment
Thank you "Payfreeze" . I read the article also. It shows what caring teachers will do for the community in which they teach.
I would like to pass along 2 quotes which I think are relevant (not from the article)

THOMAS JEFFERSON "I place economy among the first and most important virtues, and public debt as the greatest of dangers. To preserve our independence, we must not let our rulers load us with perpetual debt. If we can prevent the Government from wasting ...more
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 27, 10 6:36 PM
Kelly, what about what caring communities will do for their schools and teachers? Where's the respect for the educators who work hard to ensure that each child has a quality education? It's not just a one-way street where the schools need to cut. The community needs to stop bad-mouthing our schools and SUPPORT them.
By hblawgrad (2), Hampton Bays on Apr 28, 10 12:09 AM
I do believe there are many caring, dedicated teachers in HB. I do believe that the children need a quality education and that education is important for them and the community.
I also know that many in the community have been laid off, have taken pay-freezes/paycuts, cannot find work or on a fixed income.

I do not believe in the excess that exists and think most budgets on LI are out of control due to the increases of the past and the union.

Please do not misconstrue ...more
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 28, 10 7:04 AM
I agree BeachGal. School budgets are completely out of control. We have to reign in spending just as we have been doing in other sectors. Budgets have spiraled out of control. In addition, many people who have kids in the school do not pay taxes....
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 23, 10 1:15 PM
Don't punish your own children by voting NO in defense of your own racist views.

Come to a Board Meeting and learn something new.
By wakemanfoster (6), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 7:58 AM
Education - if someone is living in a home in Hampton Bays rental or otherwise...they are still paying taxes!
By BeachGal (72), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 9:03 AM
education-if 5 families are living in a home in Hampton Bays rental or otherwise....not all of them are paying taxes!
By Bayman3142 (249), Southampton on Apr 24, 10 10:10 AM
you must be a teacher, The view expressed is not racist it is the truth. Since you are apparently on the inside, how many non-english speaking students are in the school, and do they have there own classes?
By Bayman3142 (249), Southampton on Apr 24, 10 10:13 AM
Your school taxes are funded by property taxes..when a landlord rents the property it is figured into the rent. If, however, a family of live are living in a home and you are aware. It is your obligation as a taxpayer to turn them into code enforcement.

Education - If you are going to whine about something..do something about it!
By BeachGal (72), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 3:11 PM
Education- There is a house down the block from me where the school bus stops 3 times every morning. There are 6 cars in the driveway and much more than 1 family. I would guess that their tax burden for those kids is much less since they have well over 1 family none of which speaks English
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 24, 10 5:35 PM
Call the code enforcers....there are laws for a reason. Personally I don't care if someone doesn't speak English..there are many people in this country who speak their native tongue. I agree 100% that illegals should be sent back to their country..but it isn't happening. This country has become too dependent on them. Some are very hard working individuals who do jobs Americans feel is beneath them..personally, I think those on welfare should be forced into the labor field and then maybe there ...more
By BeachGal (72), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 10:35 PM
I don't want to be responsible for throwing children out on the street. It should never have gotten this far. I am not going turn people in when the local govt is fully aware they exist and the school sees fit to education them. Police cars drive down my block every day with full knowledge of what is going on. The school has full knowledge of what is going on. Maybe we should start enforcing legislation similar to that of Arizona.
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 25, 10 12:45 PM
Wakemanfoster, very quick to use the racism card. I didn't see kelly charge ANY ethnicity with adding to this problem, she simply refferred to those of us not paying taxes. Which ethnic group are YOU refferring to by assuming this is a racial claim? I beleive that YOU, sir, used racist thinking to come to your conclusion. Get over your divisive attitude and think in terms of everyone being equal, it's alot more peaceful.
By AlwaysLocal (292), southampton on Apr 27, 10 2:27 AM
Here we go again Raise Taxes and drive the hard working class out! I for one am voting AGAINST the increase! I can not afford this! Cut back salaries and freeze the budget! Sharpen your pencils for crying out loud! We do not need more programs. I didn't have half these things when i was in school. I participated in one or two activities. I am already stating to look for a new job out of state. I guess "They" want to just keep forcing the locals out who work here and try to just get buy. It would ...more
By Fedupin HamptonBays (18), Hampton Bays on Apr 23, 10 1:45 PM
You seem to forget that the school IS the locals! More than 50% of the people who work inthe school live here and raise their families here!
By metz1453 (5), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 10:31 AM
1 member liked this comment
No one in the school is going to lose their job if this budget doesn't pass. It is irresponsible to increase spending at this point in time. Everyone is feeling the pinch and they decide to increase nonessential programs. I will be voting against this travesty as well.
By ICE (1214), Southhampton on Apr 24, 10 3:39 PM
I'm not forgetting anything! Throwing money at needless programs is taking money out of my pocket that I dont have. My child is in the schools and so will my next child if we can afford to stay here long enough. Raising taxes is not the answer! How can I rasise my children here if all they do is take take take more and more answer me that?
By Fedupin HamptonBays (18), Hampton Bays on Apr 26, 10 7:45 AM
1 member liked this comment
I feel for you, but I feel worse for your kids. I grew in HB the son of a mechanic. A mechanic who knew the only way I could afford to stay here was if I got an education that would guarantee me a career so that I could pay the bills and afford the things he couldn't. The funding of the school system is not perfect but HB taxes are lower than anywhere west of here. And the school spends less per kid than all the others around us. What they are asking for sports is for MS and JV teams ...more
By hblifer (4), Hampton Bays on Apr 26, 10 7:34 PM
To have the audacity and add $1,500,000 to the current school budget is a slap in the face for all Hampton Bays residents. We are experiencing the worst economic collaspe since the Great Depression and the district decides to increase spending. The district offered very generous retirement incentives to employees...so much so that other districts are using it for negotiations. How much is that going to hit us for?? VOTE NO and don't be fooled!!
By Pears (1), Hamptons on Apr 23, 10 1:51 PM
1 member liked this comment
83 cents a day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
By metz1453 (5), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 10:22 AM
To a senior on a fixed income...that could cover their meds! You have to live within the means of all..not a select group.
By BeachGal (72), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 3:13 PM
School systems should be run like a business. A business can't just raise selling prices because their overhead has grown; the solution is to cut overhead and get more out of their workers.
By SagHarborBob (91), Sag Harbor on Apr 23, 10 1:54 PM
2 members liked this comment
With all the activities, I am not sure what we are actually teaching in Hampton Bays schools. I went on vacation with a group of people and was held back at the airport because one 16 year old Hampton Bays HS student did not know how to sign his name. Granted, the parents are also at fault, but how do you promote someone who does not know script and how to sign their name? We should drop the activities and foreign language requirements and get back to basics.
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 23, 10 2:25 PM
So you want to punish an entire district because of what you believe to have happened with one child? Activities and foreign language requirements are the very things that make kids thrive and perform better. Do you really want our children to fall behind the rest of the world? These kids are the future and they will be caring for all of us one day as doctors, police officers, fireman, politicians, teachers, architects . . . It is sick that we place tax rates above education in this country. ...more
By lablover (104), Southampton on Apr 23, 10 4:29 PM
There you go again...Bla Bla Bla We just want to make sure these students legally belong in our communities. One legal family per one family house. Get it lib lvr
By joe hampton (3461), south hampton on Apr 24, 10 12:03 AM
Kelly, did you ever stop to think possibly the child had a learning disability? Their problems are not stamped on their foreheads..think before you label the parents. There are some children who are not book smart, or who have the dexterity to write their names, etc. but whatever their shortcomings are..possibly it is made up elsewhere. The goal of a school is to educate a child and allow them to flourish to the best of their ability. Not what you believe they should be capable of. I certainly ...more
By BeachGal (72), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 7:34 AM
Kudos on being consistent, Kelly.

You are consistently ignorant and hateful.

By wakemanfoster (6), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 8:00 AM
I know the kid personally. He has no learning disability.
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 24, 10 9:42 AM
I said nothing ignorant or hateful. Maybe you don't like the truth.

I guess you are probably one of those teachers who is upset they will not get a raise this year. Wake up to what is going on in the economy.
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 24, 10 9:44 AM
You are right...it is a tough economy. But look at other school districts. Some are laying off 150 teachers. Others are laying off 400 teachers!! We are fortunate to be in a district where they were fiscally responsible enough to keep us together in an economy when other districts are sliding backward (and it will take them years to recover from this if they ever do!) Regardless of the spin that the SH Press put on this story...we are talking about 82 cents a day to keep our school stong. Stop ...more
By metz1453 (5), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 10:28 AM
Guy, where are you pulling this 82 cents a day from? Everyone has a different burden do to their particular tax assessment. It doesn't hold at 82 cents for all, so you can drop your hyped up talking point already!
Even if it were that, it could be the difference for some people of 2-3 days a month of food to eat, so kids can play some more sports? Sorry, if I put peoples need to eat before playtime!
By ICE (1214), Southhampton on Apr 24, 10 3:48 PM
82 cents a day is breakfast to some senior citizens who are trying to keep their houses....are new sports programs worth that? There are people who have been in this community forever and now cannot afford their taxes
This budget is extremely selfish. Every penny matters to people these days.
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 24, 10 4:45 PM
1 member liked this comment
New sports programs are not even a percent of the increase (less than $10,000). The majority of the increase is state pension and health insurance rates-both out of Hampton Bays' control. I'm sorry, but I'm not taking my anger at that out on the backs of my children. I read the budget summary on www.hbschools.us. Have you? It's responsible and provides our students with what they NEED. No more, no less.
By clart (6), Hamptons on Apr 24, 10 5:36 PM
If you read carefully, the initial shock of an 18.5% tax increase is a misleading; this article doesn't clearly tell the whole story! What we need to know is that the tax increase in what we PAY will rise by 6.7%. The average home will pay roughly $300 more in taxes ($0.82/day). In our hamlet, with decreasing assessment values projected at 10%, of course an increase causes concern. However, so much is out of the school's control. Hampton Bays schools do more with less - this year's budget increase ...more
By Baymen's Baymen (7), Hampton Bays on Apr 23, 10 2:36 PM
Thank you, Baymen, for an intelligent, rational, and thoughtful posting. People seem to forget that if the school's fall, so do the communities.
By lablover (104), Southampton on Apr 23, 10 4:31 PM
1 member liked this comment
The community is already falling just look at the bus stop in the middle of town every afternoon.
By joe hampton (3461), south hampton on Apr 24, 10 12:07 AM
1 member liked this comment
A school with many non english speaking children doesn't necessarily make a strong community, I makes it weaker when everyone can't communicate. To graduate students who can't fluently speak English should be a crime.
By ICE (1214), Southhampton on Apr 24, 10 3:54 PM
Thank you for the clear explanation, Bayman!

Too bad the SHPress editor acted irresponsibly in presenting one side of the story. Here's hoping he reads your post and learns something new, that it is his responsibility to present the news and not his angle on the news!
By knowledge is power (4), Southampton on Apr 25, 10 10:14 AM
2 thoughts here, Jose Hampton:

1) Seems to me you could be doing something more productive than hanging out at the bus stop keeping track of who rides it.

2) If this comment board is any indication, seems like the editors monitor this board for racist and ignorant views as closely as they value fair and balanced reporting!
By knowledge is power (4), Southampton on Apr 25, 10 10:20 AM
Ignore this women. She is dillusional
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 26, 10 6:48 PM
Increased the graduation rate because of social promotion. I know of a few students in this category. What percentage passed the regents exams? Correct me if I am wrong, but the percentage of HB students passing was in the 70's where the average for Long Island passed 90.
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 23, 10 2:47 PM
You are correct about the rate, but again you should ask for the context and not take the number for the whole story. For many of those schools, 90% of students got a Regents diploma but the school's graduation rate was much lower. I wouldn't say the rate increased because of social promotion. Students earning a local, Regents, or Advanced Designation diploma all meet rigorous, state-approved standards. In the last three years, Hampton Bays has legitimately graduated more students with special ...more
By Baymen's Baymen (7), Hampton Bays on Apr 23, 10 3:12 PM
There is no such thing in "social promotion" in Hampton Bays or any other High School! Hampton Bays graduated 90% of the students in 2009, which included 35 students who were high needs and at-risk kids (kids who would have been high school drop-outs). Seems to me the district is doing a great job with less than what neighboring districts are doing! That is, the cost per student is the lowest on the south fork, and has been for years. We should be proud and supportive of our Hampton Bays Schools!
By patilin13 (2), Hampton Bays on Apr 23, 10 3:06 PM
I cannot understand how a kid who cannot write script or sign his name can make it to the 10th grade... Isn't that social promotion? Or standards have dramatically changed since I was in HS... I know it has been a few years... but isn't this taught in the lower levels?
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 23, 10 3:11 PM
Yes, it was! I learned to write in script in 3rd grade at 8 years old. I imagine the importance of writing in script has lessened due to the increase in computers being used in education. We used to have to write all our essays and reports in script, now they are typed, for the most part.
By ICE (1214), Southhampton on Apr 24, 10 3:59 PM
Hire 39 year old Superintendent with no business experience = check
Having a board rubber stamp the biggest increase in spending = check
Hiring all relatives to work at Hampton Bays School District = check
Screwing the community = PRICELESS!

Wait until the teacher contract negotiations are front and center.
By baywoman5 (1), hampton bays on Apr 23, 10 3:36 PM
4 members liked this comment
Actually, it is the smallest increase in spending (2.8%) in at least the last 10 years.
By Baymen's Baymen (7), Hampton Bays on Apr 23, 10 4:10 PM
Hire a Business Administrator from the corporate world = CHECK
Having the BOE approve a minimal increase in spending 2.8%=CHECK
Being the largest employer in the Hampton Bays community of highly qualified staff = CHECK
Increasing the graduation rate to 90% = CHECK
Having Moodys increase bond rating due to fiscal responsibility = CHECK

Attending a board meeting and becoming informed = PRICE
Protection of property value because of a good school district = PRICELESS
By metz1453 (5), Hampton Bays on Apr 23, 10 4:11 PM
39 year old Superintendent? Check again...if anything he is in his early 30's.
By BeachGal (72), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 7:35 AM
You are talking about one student out of 2000 and I would imagine that you have no idea what his needs were. Maybe he was a special needs child or has motor issues! You certainly can't base what one student does on all of the others. And yes, standards in American education have dramatically changed - and continue to do so.The standards are going higher and higher. Personally, I feel sorry for the hoops the Federal govt is making our children jump through. You certainly can't say that it isn't ...more
By patilin13 (2), Hampton Bays on Apr 23, 10 3:51 PM
1 member liked this comment
LOL. Think, how did this child get so far in such a "good" school district without his problem being detected? As for your assertion that todays schools are tougher, this is not true the standards fluctuate constantly. They do not just continually get harder. When I was in school you couldn't graduate HS without reading, writing and speaking English, now this has changed and for the worse.
By ICE (1214), Southhampton on Apr 24, 10 4:05 PM
I dont care who is responsible for this increase I AM VOTING NO!!!!!!!
By GoldenBoy (351), EastEnd on Apr 23, 10 3:55 PM
I CARE so I AM VOTING YES. It is my property values that need protection and our kids who need a good education. For .83 cents a day it is well worth it!
By metz1453 (5), Hampton Bays on Apr 23, 10 4:15 PM
2 members liked this comment
83 cent a broken record a day! It would be annoying if you repeated something that was accurate but this is approaching comical, good job Jester!
By ICE (1214), Southhampton on Apr 24, 10 4:24 PM
If the standards have increased, how did he make it to 10th grade? We should have concentrated on teaching him to sign his name or send him to a special school. We are concentrating on teaching English...
We are all facing cuts due to the economy. This is not the time to raise taxes when everyone is working with less money and so many are unemployed. We need to cut the budget and take a serious look at salaries, pensions and non-essential activities--- as has been going on in all other sectors ...more
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 23, 10 4:01 PM
So, you're voting NO to make a statement on salaries (collectively bargained), pensions (controlled by the state) and "non-essential activities" that could help a kid get a scholarship and get into a college?

Kelly, like it or not, we are all impacted by the economic crisis, starting at the national level, and working its way down to the state, local, and school level.

We should not take out our anger on the schools and the students that attend them. This snap decision could have ...more
By wakemanfoster (6), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 3:40 PM
Can you please step into 2010. It sounds like all of your conclusions are based on your own school experience. One forgets how quickly and rapidly the world of education changes.
By BaymenNYC (59), Manhattan on Apr 26, 10 5:32 PM
How is a Hampton Bays HS graduate going to pay his taxes if he can't sign his name?
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 26, 10 6:42 PM
Wow, such rage and hatred! How many of you posting on this board were educated in the public school system? How many of your kids? Was it OK for them to get the best education available but today's children should just forget it? Where are your priorities? Shameful.
By lablover (104), Southampton on Apr 23, 10 4:26 PM
1 member liked this comment
Yes Yes, But our grand parents came through Ellis Island not a hole in the fence
By joe hampton (3461), south hampton on Apr 24, 10 12:10 AM
It is expansion of the sports programs lablover, not education, get it straight.

As for the hole in the fence, there is no fence and that is part of the problem. There are no repercussions for entering this country illegally, it is win win for them so we can't expect it to change.
By ICE (1214), Southhampton on Apr 24, 10 4:11 PM
Today's schools have way more than years ago. It is not necessary to add 5 new sports teams in an economy where 83 cents may mean breakfast of medications to some people.
Shameful on you for your narrow-mindedness. You are obviously part of the school system and have self-interests
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 24, 10 4:53 PM
You're anger is misguided and your racist sentiments are disgusting.
By yearrounder (208), Southampton on Apr 25, 10 3:15 PM
My last comment was intended for joe hampton aka Joe Hatred
By yearrounder (208), Southampton on Apr 25, 10 4:29 PM
I do not hate anyone because of the color of their skin YR just stating facts
By 27dan (2854), south hampton on May 4, 10 9:42 PM
What rage and hatred? We are merely stating the facts.

Many of us have had salary freezes or have been laid off due to the economy. We can't afford to raise teacher's salaries in this economy.
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 23, 10 6:11 PM
1 member liked this comment
Rage and hatred are the fall back argument for something that can't be defended with facts or common sense. The other more inflammatory word is racism, when you don't approve of something that has to do with someone of a different nationality or ethnicity it is attributed to racism. Ironically this is done by bigots, they toss the word around every time someone doesn't agree with them!
By doing this they do a disservice to the word by using it when it is not applicable.
By ICE (1214), Southhampton on Apr 24, 10 4:17 PM
2 members liked this comment
In these difficult ecomomic times... I find myself cutting back in many areas. So... the bottom line is "you can't get blood from a rock". I WILL VOTE NO.
Business is down and expenses are up. Can't keep increasing expenses if cash flow is down. That is the problem with the entire system. When are people going to use common sense????
By littleitaly (4), Hampton Bays on Apr 23, 10 10:50 PM
2 members liked this comment
The only way your assessment decreases is if you grieve your taxes and win. The assessment doesn't magically go down on its own! The town never voluntarily decreases assessemts. So get your grievance ready cause your going to need it!
By littleitaly (4), Hampton Bays on Apr 23, 10 10:59 PM
1 member liked this comment
"outside factors" yes like illegal outsiders
By joe hampton (3461), south hampton on Apr 24, 10 12:00 AM
I do NOT disagree that educating our children is important to all of our futures; however, at the same time we need balance. I realize that the 18.5% increase is a misleading statement. However, NO increase at this point in time is acceptable. To you $300 more in taxes might not be a big increase, but to many on a fixed income it is a fortune. Possibly Advanced Placement Programs should be funded by the parent instead of the district? I have no issue with the education we are providing the ...more
By BeachGal (72), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 7:54 AM
1 member liked this comment
It amazes me that all you folks are reading and writing all this trash talk about the schools and what you can and can't afford. Meanwhile if it were not for the public schools most of us wouldn't know how to read or write. Where did you first learn to use that box in front of you called a computer?...school. Where did you learn to calculate what your taxes might be based upon a % increase?...school. Where did you learn about the laws of our society and what is and isn't legal?...school. So how ...more
By hblifer (4), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 8:24 AM
1 member liked this comment
I don't think I heard anyone suggest that we close the schools. I have heard people say that they should try to get more out of what they have, which is not unreasonable. Everyone is has trimmed spending and tried to stretch their $, why shouldn't the school district do the same? The state has cut back because less money is coming in for the people, why does the school assume they can bleed us dry? In the last 10 years our school taxes have gone up 300% in total! That is out of control.
By ICE (1214), Southhampton on Apr 24, 10 4:30 PM
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Caution should be used in reading this article. While the headline talks about a tax rate increase (the rate per thousand dollars of assessed value established by the Town of Southampton which in turn computes your tax liability), the first sentence in the article incorrectly talks about a tax increase. Don’t confuse the two. A tax rate increase and a property tax increase are two very different things. With or without the new assessment, the rate at which you are taxed is likely to go up, but ...more
By msloewen (1), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 9:16 AM
By ICE (1214), Southhampton on Apr 24, 10 4:34 PM
If anyone figured out what teachers and the administration who have been there for years make per day because they only work basically half a year when you include the weeks and weeks of time off it is crazy...let them figure out what the world(including other districts) is like right now, where people are not only getting told no for raises but getting let from jobs they have been at for years...pay freezes are the least the school district can do to help our community; we'll see how devoted to ...more
By funkymunky (1), sh on Apr 24, 10 10:24 AM
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As people have stated, the actual tax increase is not 18.5% but closer to 6.7%. The district is losing money from federal funding and grants, not from spending increases. How about the people on this board meeting some of the graduating class of 2010, there many bright and wonderful students who have been getting a fantastic education from HBHS. Many, many of the 140 students graduating this year are going to great colleges and will be representing our little community all over the US. Our teachers ...more
By Terbear (77), Southampton on Apr 24, 10 10:50 AM
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They are increasing spending for more sports teams, read the article again or maybe for the first time.
By ICE (1214), Southhampton on Apr 24, 10 4:36 PM
Teacher's salaries are the largest part of our budgets. The State of NY provides them with a tax benefit that none of us receive..as long as they live in NY State their pension is NOT taxed. If they move out-of-state, they are subject to the tax laws of the State they reside. Not only are their salaries and benefits over-burdening the taxpayers while they are working, but once they leave they enjoy retirement benefits that NONE of us have. So, please don't tell me how much a teacher gives ...more
By BeachGal (72), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 3:40 PM
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Don't misdirect you anger about the state pension system for the school budget. There two different arguments.
By wakemanfoster (6), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 4:21 PM
The largest portion of your taxes goes to pay your teachers and contribute to their pension system...they are NOT two different arguments. Think clearly..state aid is being cut ..on Long Island alone you have approximately 4400 retired teachers who are NOT paying state income tax. Do the math...and that is only one area they are benefited more than the average retired worker. The system is broke..it has to be fixed and you can not put band-aids on it anymore. It is essential to all of our ...more
By BeachGal (72), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 5:01 PM
Beachgal, are you aware that all state, local and municipal employees who retire under the state retirement system do not pay state income tax on their pensions? That includes, cops, highway workers, even politicians. It is a benefit the state gave to its employees becasue they are civil service. While this benefit seems like a lot right now in this economy, when the economy is flying high it is the civil service folks who are the ones that feel everyone else has it better.
By hblifer (4), Hampton Bays on Apr 26, 10 8:01 PM
It is a benefit that needs to be taken back. Civil service employees today have it better than the average wage earner. Remember it is that average worker that is paying their salaries and benefits. It most likely was given to them during a time that salaries were VERY low. Today these people are well compensated for their jobs. NYC retires do NOT get exempt according to someone I asked who is retired from the police department. The economy is not going to b flying high again for many for ...more
By BeachGal (72), Hampton Bays on Apr 27, 10 9:06 PM
Can someone please clarify the numbers for me? Why was 18.5% reported?

I'd like to be informed and vote on the budget based on the FACTS and not emotions that come from one side of the story.

There has got to be more to the story than what was reported.

By wakemanfoster (6), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 4:14 PM
Wakemanfoster, it's a complicated situation one that even the press did not explain correctly. I have been to one of the presentations by the school and I called a few days later to ask them questions. I also confirmed what they said with the town tax assessor. The assessed value of our homes will likely go down, if you live on the water you might be the unlucky one, but most people will see their assessment drop about 10%. Because of that alone tax rate will rise about 10%. The cuts in Albany make ...more
By hblifer (4), Hampton Bays on Apr 24, 10 5:31 PM
Funny that everyone's jumping on teachers' salaries. No one cared back in the 80s and 90s when those in private business were consistently making six figures (bankers, business, contractors, etc) and scoffing the teachers who made much less. As someone in private business, I understand the economic cycle. Do I hate taking a hit in this economy? Yes. But it's a cycle and will rebound. In the meantime, I'm not willing to have my kids' schools slip backwards because the cost of catching back ...more
By clart (6), Hamptons on Apr 24, 10 5:32 PM
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Your children's education would not be jeopardized by the district seriously looking to make cuts. All districts are cutting back..all businesses have cut back..this is not a NORMAL cycle. Our State is close to being bankrupt..we are paying $.50 on the dollar of monies borrowed from China. The town is having fiscal problems..take the rose colored glasses off and realize we have NEVER in OUR lifetime had the problems we are facing. Without EVERYONE at every level taking a good hard look on ...more
By BeachGal (72), Hampton Bays on Apr 25, 10 2:51 PM
Maybe the teachers should work a full year, full day and give up the pensions like the contractors and business people have done also, freeze the salaries. I have had a salary freeze for the past 2 years. My property value has gone down, my taxes are sure to increase, I am going to have to pay for health insurance. There are things that can be cut without hurting the kids education.
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 24, 10 5:59 PM
The cost of the school has risen due to population, population has risen due to demand for cheap labor. The problem is wealthy people like things cheap so contractors are forced to hire illegals....costs them nothing in insurance, no retirement, minimum wage labor. These people are exploited to say the least. Landlords all jumped on the band waggon and house as many as possible for maximum rental income.....So it's not the illegals fault here, its the people who hire them, the people that want the ...more
By Just (14), Hampton Bays on Apr 25, 10 2:06 AM
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The cost of the school has risen due to population, population has risen due to demand for cheap labor. The problem is wealthy people like things cheap so contractors are forced to hire illegals....costs them nothing in insurance, no retirement, minimum wage labor. These people are exploited to say the least. Landlords all jumped on the band waggon and house as many as possible for maximum rental income.....So it's not the illegals fault here, its the people who hire them, the people that want the ...more
By Just (14), Hampton Bays on Apr 25, 10 2:08 AM
Where do these educated HB students go after graduation. They have to leave HB to join the business world or find a job. Entry level construction, painting, landscaping, pool jobs all go to the illegals as cheap labor. Where does an 18 year old find a job in our community? We are undermining the middle class.
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 25, 10 10:02 AM
So Kelly, Let's get this straight:

1) You spend time dining out.
2) You hold parties that are catered.
3) You fly to exotic locales to vacation.

Your comments concern me, because what it comes down to is that you are looking to scapegoat the hardworking people of HB, half of whom are employed by the school district. This includes not just teachers, but classroom aides, lunch monitors, custodians, and even local kids who come back to give back to their school.

Kelly, ...more
By knowledge is power (4), Southampton on Apr 25, 10 10:37 AM
Wow! talk about misdirected (knowledge LOL) I don't know where you get your information about :dining out, catered parties and exotic locals...I probably would not be living in HB if I had that kind of money.
you are incredibly wrong. It sounds like you have a lot of issues which you may want to address before you make a comment.
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 25, 10 12:03 PM
Kelly, hopefully you are sitting down. I got the info from YOU when I read your other posts.

Maybe its time you checked in with Kelly, Kelly. Your own issues seem to be confusing YOU.

Maybe its time you take another vacation.

Chances are, youll spend it judging situations you know nothing about (like your high school kid who couldnt write his name).
By knowledge is power (4), Southampton on Apr 25, 10 1:36 PM
Interesting how you keep having my responses removed. I am surprised that the press humors you.

As stated before, you are a bitter women.
not that I should have to explain myself but since you are referring to a previous comment in which I rated a restaurant.
I frequented a local restaurant as a guest ..as for the catering, my siblings and I were planning a 50th anniversary party for my parents. It is no crime to go on vacation.
You are saying that we should not support our ...more
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 26, 10 2:08 PM
"knowledge is power"
It would seem that more likely, you are a high school drop- out
or one of those children who cannot write their name in script
or someone who is bitter because they never got out of the trailer park.
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 26, 10 2:14 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 25, 10 1:46 PM
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Hey, Joe Hampton, these people of Latino descent you refer to so derisively are, in many many school districts, performing better than 2nd, 3rd, and 4th generation Americans. Why? Because they know, like all children of immigrants have always known - to survive here as the child of immigrant parents you must do better than everyone else. Or let's put it in terms you can understand - the brown kids are doing better than many of the white kids
By yearrounder (208), Southampton on Apr 25, 10 3:20 PM
thats fine but they should be here legally first. Don't you agree?
By joe hampton (3461), south hampton on Apr 30, 10 11:59 PM
This board is out of touch with reality. The voters are going to vote NO and demand cuts somewhere, anywhere.
By EastEnd68 (888), Westhampton on Apr 25, 10 4:00 PM
The only reason illegals come to Hampton Bays is because local contractors and businessmen (our neighbors) hire them. That is the source of the problem.
By EastEnd68 (888), Westhampton on Apr 25, 10 4:09 PM
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I agree with you, But have to mention it starts with the wealthy that want cheap labor hence the contractor hires the cheap workers. So basically its the one with the most money taking advantage of those with least.
By Just (14), Hampton Bays on Apr 26, 10 3:04 PM
The Press should be ashamed of the headline chosen for this article. It is either intellectually dishonest to get people riled up against everything they perceive to be wrong with public education and immigration; plain wrong to make passage of the school budget nearly impossible; or proof that the person who chose the headline does not understand the simple relationship between assessments, tax rates, and tax revenue. If any of these is accurate, The Press has done a great disservice to the School ...more
By Doug Penny (64), Lexington, Virginia on Apr 25, 10 5:29 PM
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Yeah...it will be a miracle.
I vote no.
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 25, 10 5:32 PM
I agree 100%. This article was written to insight fear, panic, and hatred in the community. The tax rate increase is based on our decreasing property values. What will I PAY? 6.7% more in taxes to fund a school that is on a rapid trajectory upward, NOT 18.5%. School budgets are complicated- seek out the facts and understand this article only gives you PART of the story. The WHOLE story is much more interesting, more balanced, and fair to the taxpayer. Seek out a school official and ask them ...more
By clart (6), Hamptons on Apr 25, 10 10:52 PM
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I've read this entire article 3 times and each time I get more incensed. Adding 5 new sports teams-this board is dreaming. Most districts on Long Island have faced reality and are cutting teams and programs. School districts just can not afford these things now. We are in an economic recession.
By EastEnd68 (888), Westhampton on Apr 25, 10 10:03 PM
Passing this budget will make my taxes go up $300. Without the five sports, they'll go up $281. For $19, I'll support new opportunities for kids-especially ones that offer scholarships: cheerleading, wrestling, lacrosse. I'm incensed too - that factors out of the school's control are hurting us. But I'm not taking it out on my kids, my neighbors kids, or our community.
By Baymen's Baymen (7), Hampton Bays on Apr 25, 10 10:44 PM
I’ve been thinking about this for a few days, ever since the article was published and I’ve been reading the comments posted. As my screen name notes, I graduated from Hampton Bays and I have to say I couldn’t imagine what high school would be like without the extra curricular activities or the AP classes. I was more competitive in my college applications because I ran track & field, was a Varsity Club member, was a member of SADD, Hope, Youth Court, and participated in a lot of other activities. ...more
By hblawgrad (2), Hampton Bays on Apr 25, 10 10:59 PM
You are exactly right, hblawgrad. Thank you.
By yearrounder (208), Southampton on Apr 26, 10 8:08 AM
i agree hampton bays has graduated some very bright and succesful people we should be proud of all of them lawyers,doctors,fishermen,nurses,educators,espiceally service men and women ,postal workers,landscapers,and most of our local business owners this is a great place to live,and education is the most important gift to give budgets come and go education breeds success.
By earl of olay (13), hampton bays on Apr 27, 10 5:55 PM
My Children will not be able to live on long island or in Hampton Bays when they are older. Any increase 18.5% or 6.7% either way is unacceptablt to me.
I AM VOTING NO NO MATTER WHAT YOU ALL SAY. I am not trying to hurt my children or the neighborhood. If some of you think i am then you should go to your Congressmen and stop the cuts at the State level not take more money out peoples pockets who can not afford it. When has anyone ever gotten a 6.7% Salary increase In this economy i am struggling ...more
By Fedupin HamptonBays (18), Hampton Bays on Apr 26, 10 8:17 AM
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Please explain how going to your congressman would stop cuts at the state level? The problem all budgets are experiencing is due to years of giving and not being fiscally responsible to the taxpayer. From the top down there is no money and cuts need to be made. We are in tough times and everyone needs to address it; instead of thinking the taxpayers have pockets full of money to support everything they would like to provide at all levels. Don't get me wrong, I certainly would like to see the ...more
By BeachGal (72), Hampton Bays on Apr 26, 10 9:18 AM
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A quick read of this article and you will have no choice but to conclude that SH Press has resorted to sensationalist journalism.
By yearrounder (208), Southampton on Apr 26, 10 9:29 AM
By Just (14), Hampton Bays on Apr 26, 10 3:13 PM
The teachers are already paid more (between the salary and pensions) than most Hampton Bays residents.
Stores and restaurants are closing, construction is way down. The union needs a reality check.
This budget is going to go the same way as most New Jersey budgets have gone.
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 26, 10 5:08 PM
if you really cared about Hampton Bays and the kids, you would all take a salary freeze and put that money towards the 5 new sports teams.
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 26, 10 5:19 PM
It was not long ago when I was a student in Hampton Bays Public Schools. I look back at my many years spent in Hampton Bays with such fondness and recall many good memories, many great teachers, and a community that is as tight and strong as any other. One of the reasons why I chose to become an educator in New York City was because of the many positive influences and role models I came across while a student. These teachers had high expectations, wise words, and always made themselves available. ...more
By BaymenNYC (59), Manhattan on Apr 26, 10 5:20 PM
We need to change some laws. If you can not provide a social security number than we can no onger afford to educate non-residents, end of story.
By Yearround Resident (23), Southampton on Apr 26, 10 5:56 PM
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One of the things that makes America great is that we will educate any child. Besides, if someone resides in the district it means they contribute to the tax base, period. If you rent, you enable your landlord to pay taxes, period. Stop blaming everything on immigrants and start opening your eyes to the world around you.
By setyoufree (69), Sag Harbor on Apr 27, 10 4:56 PM
For more information on reducing our school taxes see
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 26, 10 7:52 PM
Obviously, we have gross incompetence at the top.

1) Impeach the Superintendent who had the audacity to present this budget.
2) Seek out more capable community members for the school board.

This is a new era of accountability and sustainability! These folks clearly don't get it.
By Politicritic (4), Hampton Bays on Apr 27, 10 8:22 AM
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You're talking about a $20 a year increase for the average homeowner so why such anger? Kids First
By peoplefirst (787), Southampton on Apr 28, 10 12:12 PM
Please let me know how you arrived at that calculation because it is incorrect.
By kelly (75), hampton bays on Apr 28, 10 12:34 PM
How about this calculation: $43 million divided by 1800 children in the district schools equals $24,000 per student per year. Do you feel our kids are getting $24,000 worth of education?
By davidf (325), hampton bays on Apr 30, 10 9:36 PM