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GJSD budget – vote YES

The GJSD Board of Education, District Administration, faculty, support staff, students and retirees have had an extremely challenging year, not to mention the unprecedented impact of COVID-19. They have made some very difficult, but necessary decisions to secure the financial stability and future of our school district.

In order to reduce the budget gap and match our physical plant with our shrinking student population, Glebe Street Elementary School was closed and Knox Junior High School will be repurposed. Major cost savings will be realized through health insurance plan revisions and steps have been taken to instill a more disciplined process with regard to reporting and monitoring of the district’s financial results. Numerous other initiatives have been implemented to make the district more efficient and cost effective. The district is definitely going in the right direction.

If the budget fails to pass with at least 60 percent approval of the votes cast, then the district will have to eliminate an additional $890,000 from the operating budget. I shudder to think what our district will look like after such massive additional cuts — teachers, teaching assistants, support staff, sports, extra-curricular activities will be eliminated. We will be left with only a shell of a school district.

A five percent tax increase, while significant, is nothing compared to the irreparable damage that would be caused by almost $900,000 in additional cuts. While there is still work to be done, our district has earned our trust and support. Vote YES for the 2020-2021 GJSD budget. We owe it to the district and most of all, we owe it to our children.

JOHN SAGAN

Johnstown

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