Rye City School Budget Gets 70 Percent Voter Approval

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Karen Belanger, left, and Blake Jines-Story received the most votes for two open seats on the Rye City School Board.
Karen Belanger, left, and Blake Jines-Story received the most votes for two open seats on the Rye City School Board. Photo Credit: Rye City School District

RYE, N.Y. – Voters passed the Rye City schools $79.36 million budget by more than a two-to-one margin Tuesday night and incumbent Karen Belnager and newcomer Blake Jines-Story won the election for two seats on the Board of Education, according to unofficial results.

With 1,800 ballots tallied, 70.27 percent voted in favor of the budget, which complies with the state-mandated cap on the property tax levy. The district plans to increase the tax levy 1.64 percent and use $2.7 million in reserves and another $913,250 in a new utility tax, with which some residents have expressed displeasure.

The proposed utility tax will be up for discussion at a May 28 public hearing

A 1.08 percent tax rate increase means homeowners will pay $560.65 per $1,000 of assessed value on their home, an increase of $5.99 per $1,000 of assessed value.

Incumbent Karen Belanger received 1,311 votes, followed by newcomers Blake Jines-Story with 1,129. Jason Mehler had 539 votes.

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