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Apr 22, 2019 12:26 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Bridgehampton School Board Adopts $18.7 Million Budget For 2019-20 School Year

Apr 23, 2019 3:00 PM

The Bridgehampton Board of Education unanimously approved an $18.7 million budget for the upcoming 2019-20 fiscal year, which, if approved by voters next month, will increase spending by roughly $2.4 million, or 14.7 percent.

The spending increase is mainly due to a $1,099,122 jump in the district’s debt service due to a voter-approved bond to construct a 35,000-square-foot expansion to the Montauk Highway school.

Health insurance costs also are expected to rise by approximately $278,000.

Additionally, the district plans to hire three full-time staff members, including math, science and technology teachers, as well as a director of special education and an assistant principal, raising instructional costs by $189,825, according to Superintendent Robert Hauser.

The district’s tax rate is also expected to jump from $1.77 to $1.82 per $1,000 of assessed value. Therefore, a taxpayer whose home is valued at $500,000 can expect to pay roughly $910 in school taxes next year, or $25 more than last year.

Additionally, the spending plan carries a tax levy of $15,910,513, which is a 10.8-percent increase from the current year’s $14,355,231 tax levy, according to the district’s business administrator Melisa Stiles.

Despite the double-digit increase in the tax levy, the district will not pierce the state’s cap on tax levy increases from year to year, since construction costs, along with certain other spending items, are exempt from the calculation.

The budget vote will be held on May 21 from 2 to 8 p.m. in the gymnasium.

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