My County Executive has proposed a new way to close the Medicare gap in the county’s budget. Mrs. Brooks is proposing to take away schools’ share of sales taxes because New York state increased aid to schools last year. the program is called FAIR. It’s an acronym for Fairness, Accountability, Innovation, and Results. 29 school districts affected by this program are suing the county to reverse the Fair program.
The increased funds from New York state have been specifically assigned to certain programs. Schools can’t use that money for their regular budget needs. By taking away the schools’ share of sales taxes will just squeeze budgets that are already tight. We had a meeting last week in our department to discuss the changes we’ll have to make because of the fair program. New computers that teachers were depending on will have to wait. we’ve already stretched our computer cycle from 3 years to 5 years. Now, that 6 year old computer in the english teacher’s room will have to last two more years. I’ve found that a 5 year old computer will get ignored in a classroom. It’s just not fast enough to run the software they use. Now, how does denying technology to classrooms wind up being Fair or Innovative?
http://www.monroecounty.gov/?q=node/3833 Monroe County Description of the FAIR program