main content starts here

Budget vote and board election to be held June 9

Filed in Archive, Budget News, District, District News by on May 5, 2020

In an executive order issued last Friday, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced that this year’s school budget vote and Board of Education election will take place on June 9. The statewide vote had been scheduled to take place on May 19 but was postponed due to the COVID-19 public health crisis.

There will be no in-person voting on June 9. The vote will be held by absentee ballot only. The district is continuing to review details of the executive order and will be providing more information about the process for voting in the coming days. This information will be mailed to voters and posted to the district website.

The Board of Education is expected to adopt a proposed 2020-21 budget on May 20. Following the adoption of the proposed budget, the district will:

  • make the proposed budget available to the public;
  • hold a budget hearing on a date to be announced soon (the hearing will take place remotely); and
  • mail a budget notice to all residents after the budget hearing. 

Board of Education Election

Voters in the Bethlehem Central School District will also elect three members of the Board of Education by absentee ballot this year. The governor’s executive order waived the minimum signature threshold for Board of Education candidate petitions. Candidates must meet all of the other requirements to run for the Board. 

Board members in Bethlehem serve volunteer, three-year terms. They receive no salary or other compensation. Those elected this year will each serve terms beginning July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2023. Individuals are eligible for election to the Board if they are qualified voters of the district (district resident for the last year, U.S. citizen, 18 and older) and can read and write. New York State Education Law does not limit the number of terms of office a member may serve.

Candidate nomination forms are due no later than 5 p.m. on Monday, May 11. To obtain a nomination form for the Board of Education, please contact District Clerk Brittany Barrett via email at bbarrett@bethlehemschools.org.

A Meet the Candidates forum is expected to take place in late May. The event will be held remotely and viewed online.

Learn more about being a member of the Board of Education.

COVID-19 uncertainty surrounds state aid, budget discussions

Developing a school budget during the global COVID-19 pandemic grows increasingly challenging for school districts as New York state grapples with a multi-billion dollar deficit and the timeline for approval of a 2020-21 budget remains unclear.

The state’s revenues for the 2020-21 fiscal year are projected to be $13.3 billion less than what was forecast in January as a direct consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a report by the state Division of the Budget (DOB).

Read more about state aid projections and the potential impact on the school district budget.