The School Budget Explained
The School Budget Vote
This article is one of a series to help explain to residents some of the more arcane and complicated aspects of school budgets.
Why is There a Budget Vote?
New York's locally elected Boards of Education are required to present a spending plan annually for the approval of the voters in each district. (School districts in the state's large cities are an exception; their residents do not vote on school budgets.)
When and Where is the Vote?
New York State has mandated that all school districts hold their budget vote on the third Tuesday in May. Voting in Roslyn takes place between 7 am and 9 pm in the Roslyn High School gymnasium.
The election of trustees to the Board of Education is held on the same day as the budget vote. The budget for the Bryant Library is presented to the community for approval at this time, as well. The ballot may also contain special propositions for which voter approval is required, such as borrowing for capital projects or changing transportation mileage limits. The Board may call special elections at different times of the year, as well, either to seek approval for special propositions or to fill vacancies on the Board.
If the budget is approved, it goes into effect at the start of the next fiscal year, on July 1.
What Happens if the Budget is Not Approved?
In the event that voters reject the school budget, the Board may submit the same budget, or a revised budget, for a second vote. The date for a second vote, or re-vote, is also mandated by the state, this time on the third Tuesday in June. The Board of Education also has the option of adopting a “contingency” budget instead of calling for a second vote. If the budget is rejected by voters a second time, the Board must adopt a contingency budget. Click here to read the section about contingency budgets.
Who Can Vote?
Adult residents of the Roslyn Union Free School District are eligible to vote in the annual school budget vote. To vote, a resident must be:
A resident who has not voted in a Roslyn School District election or a general election within the last four years, or is a new resident and has not registered to vote with the Board of Elections, must register to vote in the election and budget vote. Voter registration is open up to five days prior to the election. No one may vote on the annual budget, the Board of Education trustees or on propositions unless they are qualified to vote pursuant to law.
For additional voter information, please call the district clerk at 801-5002.
Applications for absentee ballots may be obtained by calling the district clerk at 801-5002. Absentee ballot applications are also available on line by clicking here.