In wake of storm, schools need relief
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• Waiving voter approval requirements for capital expenses relating to storm damage, and easing restrictions on borrowing.
• Removing restrictions to tap into dedicated reserve funds to cover repair costs.
In the aftermath of the storm, many school districts are facing unexpected costs. Island Park’s elementary school was so badly damaged that it will be closed for at least three months. East Rockaway’s Junior-Senior High School is closed indefinitely, and the district is renting two vacant elementary schools in Baldwin — at a cost of about $48,000 per month — to house its seventh- through 12th-graders. Districts need the flexibility to be able to restore their facilities to safe, working order, and to bring back a sense of normalcy for students and staff.
We urge state lawmakers to consider these initiatives so school districts can move quickly to begin repairs, and bring some certainty to the remainder of this school year.