School Board Looks To Create New Sources of Revenue

Naming rights and advertising are just some of the possibilities.

As the Port Washington School District works on the 2013-14 budget in a struggling economy and in the face of state mandates, the school board is looking at creating new sources of revenue.

“As we go forward in tax cap challenge environment, we need to come up with a large amount of money from other sources than tax receipts,” said Alan Baer, a school board member, at Tuesday’s board meeting at Schreiber High School.

And while Baer gave credit to the fundraising capacities of local organizations such as the Port Washington Education Foundation and HSAs, “the reality is we need to find streams of hundreds of thousands dollars or face continued erosion,” he said.

Possibilities to consider include advertising around the turf field and naming rights, Baer said. Other ideas include approaching “graduates of Schreiber who have gone on to do wonderful, prosperous things,” and corporations that donate equipment, Baer noted.

Adding that they might not come forward, Baer noted that there are several local billionaires who might want to help.  “It’s not going to hurt to have a group of people to put together a sustainable program where we court some of them,” he said, pointing out that “it wouldn’t take a lot” to “go a long way inside our seven buildings."

Baer expected to develop more ideas on creating new sources of revenue in the next month or so.

Watch the full webcast of Tuesday's school board meeting.

fred January 25, 2013 at 12:19 PM
When we spend more than $25,000 per student our problem may not be new sources of revenue nearly as much as controlling costs!
Joseph Mirzoeff January 25, 2013 at 12:45 PM
Or our problem may be that we elect board members who put employee needs ahead of student and community needs. For the last 10 years, costs (mostly compensation related) have sky-rocketed. While for the last 5 or 6 years services have been reduced. Port Washington has been getting an increasingly bad deal. The Board lacks courage and/or inclination to address the problem, continuing to make things worse financially even with new kinds of payouts.
Richard Sussman January 25, 2013 at 02:12 PM
Yes, increase the sources for raising funds as long as it's kept out of the hands of our school board who will just waste it away.
Donna Rice January 25, 2013 at 02:40 PM
Why don't you take the recycling away from the Town of North Hempstead and keep that revenue for the schools
NH Runner January 25, 2013 at 04:56 PM
1000 employees for 5000 students and about 7 people on the payroll who earn close to what the governor earns. 70% of the money goes to salaries and benefits. The district cuts teachers (not administrative staff) and now we have 22 or more kids per elementary school class. The board thinks we have a revenue issue and people like Adina Genn regurgitate the false narrative that our fiscal problems are the result of state mandates... You can't solve the problem until you accept what the problem is.
Anon January 25, 2013 at 05:56 PM
I'd imagine the "revenue issue" is caused by the amount of teachers earning 100k+
Archie Bunker January 25, 2013 at 07:00 PM
If it truly is the BOE's fault, why do they keep on getting re-elected?
Joseph Mirzoeff January 26, 2013 at 12:20 PM
I think Adina does a very good job, much better than the Port Snews which has censored my contributions, as others who have criticized the school district claim as well. I like reading the commentaries on Patch. If the basic coverage bothers you, all the better. This is a good way to educate the public.
Adina Genn (Editor) January 26, 2013 at 01:52 PM
NH and Joe, thanks for weighing in.
fred January 26, 2013 at 03:31 PM
Because if you have a kid in school there is no way you wii believe that your child will get a better eduction if we cut the budget!
Archie Bunker January 27, 2013 at 12:18 AM
More money is not the answer for every problem Between the school taxes and the police tax, we are getting crushed
Port North Resident January 27, 2013 at 12:37 AM
Voter turn out is pathetic in the School Board/Budget votes in May. Most people except those who are truly motivated i.e. parents of kids in the district and school employees many of whom live in Port do not vote in these elections. I believe that the only way to increase accountability and awareness is to move these school elections to the general election ballot in November when people are already going to the polls and voting. Once that is accomplished having more voter turnout will increase as people will cast their ballots at the same time they are voting for President, Governor etc. I believe that this is the only way to increase accountability and awareness of the ongoings of the school district.
Archie Bunker January 27, 2013 at 01:10 AM
Probably save some money too -- School Board does not need to incur the costs of holding a special election It appears that NJ has the option of doing so. Perhaps it is time for NY to do the same http://www.state.nj.us/education/finance/fp/dwb/PL2011c202FAQ.pdf
sadeto January 27, 2013 at 01:43 AM
Given NY state law, which calls for mandatory budget increases when school budgets fail to pass, simply going to the polls to vote no is not the answer. And given NY state law protects teacher contracts through mandatory arbitration, and protects their pensions in the state constitution itself, boards do not have many options except not to hire new teachers, cut programs and avoid capital expenses. In other words, there are no answers. There is absolutely no possibility of property tax relief in our lifetimes. Accept it and move on with your lives.
Merrick7 January 27, 2013 at 03:44 PM
I am sorry to correct you, you may not be aware of what part of the property tax cap changed. In new law if the first budget fails to pass a contingency budget is proposed. In years past the contingency budget automatically became the budget when the budget proposal failed. Now if the contingency budget fails in the second vote, there is a ZERO percent increase in the budget from the past year. It no longer automatically goes up.
Port North Resident January 27, 2013 at 06:59 PM
Merrick7 here is the real problem because of the Triborough amendment even if the budget is voted down twice with no increase, play this out, there will be no layoffs teachers will still get their salary increases but everything that is there to enhance kids education will be cut: art, music, sports, field trips. The only way for the public to really control spending without completely destroying our kids education is to make all raises for teachers, administrators contingent on budgets passing. Unfortunately, that will never happen until the public realizes that our schools have become jobs programs for adults and less about educating kids. Kids should not have to suffer a loss because teachers and administrators are given raises despite the publics rejection of the school budget!
sadeto January 28, 2013 at 01:23 AM
Merrick7, I am aware of the new law, which you and others blindly insist on referring to as the "tax cap" law, which is exactly what Albany wants you to think it is. But it isn't. Take the time to read it. Only one part of the formula which determines tax levies is subject to a cap. Many significant parts are excluded: pension obligations, capital expenditures, liability awards, are not capped. "Zero" percent increase? Uh, not going to happen. The zero applies only to that part of the levy that is subject to the " cap". Given the rise in pension obligations, is almost impossible for a district on this island to have a zero percent increase unless voters want to slash programs and freeze hiring and drastically increase class sizes. And if you think a 2% cap would really lead to anything resembling tax relief in your lifetime, if it really were a cap (which it isn't), you have to sit down and do some math. Keeping in mind the true value of median wage increases after inflation in the past forty years. We are not going to see property tax relief in our lifetimes.


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