Last month, I wrote to the community about the 2020-21 school budget. Since that time, the Governor has announced that voting on the school budget and Board of Education election will be done exclusively by absentee ballot.
The District will mail absentee ballots to all eligible voters on May 22, 2020, using lists provided by the Erie County Board of Elections. There are three criteria for voter eligibility. Voters must be at least 18 years old, a United States Citizen, and a resident of the District for at least 30 days immediately prior to the vote. It is possible that a voter could meet eligibility requirements but not be on the Erie County Board of Elections list. If you do not receive an absentee ballot but believe you are an eligible voter, please contact the Clarence District Office at 407-9100 and an absentee ballot will be mailed to you.
The mailing will also provide an envelope with pre-paid postage to send the ballot to the District. Ballots must be received by 5:00 pm on June 9, 2020, in order to be counted. We urge voters to consider the postal service mail delivery times when submitting an absentee ballot. Voters can drop ballots off at the District Office until 5:00 pm on June 9, 2020, if they were unable to mail it on time.
There will be two propositions on the absentee ballot. The first proposition is on the 2020-21 Clarence School District budget. The budget total is $88,202,445, and the proposed increase on tax levy is 2.99 percent, at the level of the tax cap.
The second proposition would allow the District to purchase six buses. New York State will reimburse the District for 66 percent of the cost. Purchasing buses will have no impact on the tax levy for the 2020-21 school year.
The absentee ballot will also ask voters to choose three members of the Board of Education for a full term of three years, ending in 2023. There are five candidates running for three open seats, Tricia Andrews, Joshua Lynch, Vicki Nazzaro, John P. Ptak, and Dawn Snyder.
The 2020 Annual Report to the Community, which contains a plethora of budget information including charts, graphs, and summary data, will be mailed to all community members this week. The annual report will also have statements from candidates for the Board of Education. Additional budget information is available on our website at www.clarenceschools.org.
Geoffrey M. Hicks, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools