Herkimer Central School District residents overwhelmingly approved the district’s $33,932,756 budget for the 2024-25 school year on Tuesday, May 21, with a vote of 179-32.

“Thank you to the Herkimer school community for coming out and supporting our school and our students by approving this budget,” Herkimer Superintendent Kathleen Carney said. “The budget maintains all programs and staff while staying under the district’s tax levy limit, so we believe we put forth the best option for both our students and our community.”

The budget is a 3.53% increase from the 2023-24 spending plan. It includes a tax levy increase of 1.75%, which is below Herkimer’s tax levy limit of 3.27%, as calculated using the state’s formula. The district has been under the levy limit for 13 of the 14 years since the limit’s inception in 2012-13, and the one year over the limit was a 0% increase.

The budget includes additional speech services at the Elementary School and instructional support at the Jr./Sr. High School through adding a licensed teaching assistant and academic support teacher. The district will continue to seek qualified teachers to fill vacant positions including special education teachers.

Another proposition on the ballot was approved when residents voted 177-32 to authorize the creation of a capital reserve fund of up to $5 million over 10 years to help fund future capital improvements. The capital reserve will be funded annually with unallocated fund balance and other reserves as determined by the Board of Education.

Voters also re-elected Herkimer Central School District Board of Education member Michele Gilbert to a three-year term on the board with 186 votes.

Additionally, district residents voted 181-31 to approve the Frank J. Basloe Public Library’s proposed tax levy of $360,921 to fund the library’s annual budget and elected Jane Kelly Guzewich to a five-year term on the Library Board of Trustees with 188 votes. There were a few write-in votes for the district’s Board of Education and the library’s Board of Trustees, with nobody receiving more than one vote.