Click each phase title for more information.
Jan. 2019 – Dec. 2020
Baseball & Softball Fields
Fire Alarm Systems
Tennis Court Repairs
Feb. 2019 – Dec. 2020
Apr. 2019 – Dec. 2022
MS/HS Room Relocations & Renovations
Air Handling and Ventilation
Mar. 2020 – Dec. 2022
ES Classroom Renovations
Capital Project Information
Frequently Asked Questions
State Aid for public schools comes primarily from the State General Fund (approximately 78%) wherein the major revenue source is state taxes (e.g. income and sales). Of the balance of state support for public schools, approximately 10% comes from STAR and 12% comes from a Special Revenue Fund account supported by state lottery, video lottery terminal, and commercial gaming receipts. In contrast, the major source of local revenues for education are the tax levied on residential and commercial properties within the boundaries of each school district (approximately 91%), and non-property tax revenues (source: NYSED, Office of State Aid, 2017-2018 Handbook).
This could be possible under the correct economic conditions. However, even during the Great Recession, NYS never made any formal attempt at stopping or hindering building aid. The more likely scenario would be the State creating caps on new projects as opposed to impacting existing approved projects. With many schools statewide having existing projects, passing legislation to change financing would be a big problem for elected officials due to the huge negative impact on schools and communities statewide.
The State has provided a mechanism that allows Districts to “save” for future projects, acquisitions, and other allowable purposes. Reserve funds provide a mechanism for legally saving money to finance all or part of future infrastructure, equipment, and other requirements. Reserve funds can also provide a degree of financial stability by reducing reliance on indebtedness to finance capital projects and acquisitions. In uncertain economic times, reserve funds can also provide officials with a budgetary option that can help mitigate the need to cut services or to raise taxes. In good times, money not needed for current purposes can often be set aside in reserves for future use. Reserve funds are important to good financial management.
The District’s Capital Reserve Fund is a legal mechanism that allows the District to “save” money for future capital projects like the current proposed one. Good financial management over the past several years has allowed the District to save money into this reserve fund account, plus other reserve accounts. This reserve fund money is used to provide the local share of any project and prevents the need to cut programs or raise taxes. Due to good planning, this project requires no additional taxes to the community. This reserve fund, like the others, is designed to be used and not designed to act as a perpetual saving account. The Capital Reserve Fund will be replenished with continued responsible fiscal management for the next capital project need.
No. This project has 0% increase in local taxes. The project will be 100% paid for using a combination of NYS Building Aid, NYS EXCEL Fund, Native American Building Aid and Capital Reserve Fund.
This Capital Reserve Fund is specifically earmarked by law for capital improvements projects.
New secure entrances provide additional safety and security. Safe learning environments are the foundation for successful schools. The renovated classrooms will provide updated and modern instructional space for art, family/consumer science and technology. Renovated spaces will provide venues for best teaching and learning practices. The proposed renovated libraries (using current Middle School and High School library space) will provided a modern, 21st century libraries for students to work. The school is heavily used by the community and will benefit as result. Overall, the project helps maintain a positive school climate and educational experience.
The District owns Panther Bridge. The Department of Transportation placed on yellow structural flag on the bridge in October 2013. The report indicated the following condition: “End Abutment Stem Pile #5 has 43% Begin face flange section loss and 18% End face flange section.” Flag designation can be withdrawn if one of the following actions were taken: 1. Close 2. Post for reduced load or 3. Repair. This bridge is a major District transportation route. The bridge handles school bus and school traffic on a daily basis, requiring the bridge to be structurally safe and sound. In addition, there is a lack of pedestrian-vehicular separation and the narrowness limits traffic flow.
All three building struggle with temperature control. In the winter, the current entrances allow cold air to regularly enter the buildings, cooling down large sections. The proposed new entrances with vestibules will help keep out winter air. During the warmer months, temperatures in second floor classrooms regularly reach 95+ degrees. These temperature conditions do not support teaching and learning.
The current baseball/softball fields are over ten years old. These fields need repair and drainage upgrades which are needed regardless of surface type. Whether grass or artificial was chosen, the field type would be in place for the next 10+ years. Baseball/softball were chosen to turf first. These are spring sports which depend heavily on the weather. For example, this year teams could not use these fields until mid-April. With an artificial turf, sports teams can begin seasons on time and with less weather dependence. The turf fields can be used all year for other sport practices or community activities. Also, the modern fields may attract local, regional and sectional use beyond simply school use.
Our current entrances are unsecure at best. The High School and Elementary School entrances are nearly 50+ years old. These entrances were not designed for modern concerns such as safety. The Middle School entrance is more energy efficient but does provide direct access to the building. The design was sufficient when built but concerns have changed since this building was constructed. In the High School and Elementary School, the stainless steel doors do not latch properly with fluctuating temperatures. The metal contracts/expands, requiring regular maintenance. The single set of doors open directly into the building which allows visitors complete access to the entire school complex without having to register at a central, secure location. In addition, the current doors are not energy efficient. For example, in the winter, when the door is opened, cool air cools down large sections of the building.
A new High School entrance will require existing offices and classrooms to be relocated. The art classrooms will be relocated in the area where current High School main office is located. Art is a popular program and updated space will provide proper ventilation (or better) for art projects, eg, ceramics, and bring the program close in proximity to the other instructional programs. High School technology classes are relocating to the current weight/fitness center room. This renovated space will be equipped with traditional and clean technology tools as well being located away from major instructional areas for ventilation and noise. The weight/fitness room will be relocated to the current art space. This area is directly across from the gym, providing easier supervision and preventing hallway instruction. In addition there will be more convenient access for the community which regularly uses the area.
Several initial proposals and ideas were removed from the current proposed project such as central library, District Office Renovation, new Board of Education room, climate control in gyms, merging of High School/Middle School technology classes, and expansion of baseball/softball fields at Elementary School.
Over the next ten years, our student population is predicted to decline by approximately 9%. Per NYSED, GCS enrollment projections:
- 18-19: 1105
- 19-20: 1083
- 20-21: 1046
- 21-22: 1038
- 23-24: 1019
- 24-25: 1023
- 25-26: 1002
- 26-27: 1004
- 27-28: 1007
However, the students who are in the District are required to be educated and deserve the best educational experiences and opportunities possible.
No. The community votes to approve (or not) the entire proposal and associated budget. The current specific plans are artist renditions and examples. Specific designs will be determined after voter approval with input from specific stakeholders and design experts.
Once the project is approved by the community, NY Department of Education must approve the plans which may take up to 55 weeks to obtain. After approval, bids must be received for the project. Ideally, groundbreaking may take place during Summer 2019 and the entire project is slated for completion within two years. However, weather and other unanticipated events may delay this proposed timeline.
Plans include replacement of a vehicle lift along with lighting, heating and ventilation improvements.