ALBANY – School Aid in Chautauqua County will be going up next year. With the state budget passed earlier this year, state education officials have now released the school funding runs for the 2012-13 school year. The 18 school districts in Chautauqua County will receive just under $179.3 million in funding for operational, transportation and BOCES expenses – a 5.34 percent increase from the current school year.
For local school districts, Jamestown Public Schools will see a 7.31 percent increase in state funding, or just over $46.85 million. Elsewhere, Southwestern will see a 6.82 percent increase in state aid, Frewsburg will get a 6.48 percent increase and Falconer will see a 5.99 percent increase. All increases do not factor in additional moneys received for building aid, but do include funding for BOCES and transportation.
Statewide, total education aid was increased by $805 million over last year in the state budget. According to Senator Cathy Young’s office, the 45 schools in the 57th Senate District, which includes all of Chautauqua, Cattaraugus, Allegany and half of Livingston counties, will receive more than half a billion dollars, totaling $530.8 million in state assistance.
Operating aid was raised by about $14.5 million, or almost 4 percent. When operating aid is combined with expense-driven aids such as transportation and BOCES costs, the number exceeds more than $22 million in extra funding.
These local final budget numbers are nearly $6 million more than what Governor Andrew Cuomo proposed in his original budget plan in January.
Senator Young said 71 percent of the school aid increase goes to high needs districts. High needs rural districts received the highest increase per pupil, with an average $472.90.