The most glaring part of this budget is the 56.4 percent for district payroll and 24.4 percent for benefits. That’s 80.8 percent of a $102 million proposed budget for salaries and benefits! Tweak it any way you want and tell me it includes other things, but the two largest items still amount to $82 million. I read about all of the well-intended programs for the schools but the highlighted costs for them are nowhere near what I can only assume is a bloated infrastructure. Superintendent Johnson and his assistants’ outsized salaries and perks start to border on the obscene. Nobody in the private sector is ever compensated for unused sick days; getting paid for being healthy, can you imagine? Explain to taxpayers why that is an acceptable expense. There has to be a trickle-down of waste that can be trimmed, but with tax dollars as opposed to private funds paying for everything, is there ever a need to eliminate or scale back a program?
From local school budgets all the way up the line to our federal budget, bloated and wasteful spending is running amok and out of control. If school budgets like these are an absolute necessity, maybe there should be more creative ways to fund them. I’m not asking for a reduction in my school taxes, but going forward maybe those that actually use the system should pay more. Maybe not a popular choice, but I bet it would lead to closer budget scrutiny.
Thomas P. Cahill
Mad about spending
To the Editor:
It’s no secret that taxes are choking Long Island, Nassau County and Rockville Centre. It’s gotten to the point where people are considering leaving RVC due to the taxes and our children cannot afford to buy a home here. Yet School Superintendent Dr. William Johnson appears to think we ought to be grateful that the proposed school budget will only provide for an increase that falls within the state mandated tax cap. “Our goal is to get our expenses to match the limit,” quoted in last week’s Herald (“School budget proposal must get $1.3M cut”).
Dr. Johnson seems to think that the homeowners of RVC are a bottomless font of money and no matter the increase, we are all happy to pay even more taxes. Nothing could be further from the truth.