School Closures Possible in Buffalo Budget Crunch

September 27, 2013 Updated Apr 14, 2010 at 11:38 PM EDT

By John Borsa

September 27, 2013 Updated Apr 14, 2010 at 11:38 PM EDT

As many as five Buffalo schools could be on the chopping block when Superintendent James Williams presents his budget proposal to school board members next week.

"Last year we brought some schools closings forth that the board did not support," Williams said.

"I think we'll have to revisit that again," he told Eyewitness News before Wednesday's school board meeting.

The Buffalo Public School District is facing a possible $50 million budget deficit for the 2010-2011 school year, Williams said, based on Governor David Paterson's $1.4 billion proposed cut to education funding.

Williams will ask the Buffalo Board of Education for permission to use $15 million from the district's rainy day fund to cover some of the gap, leaving about $34 million.

Layoffs and school closures will most likely be required to close the budget hole.

"We want to hold the classrooms harmless, but I don't think we'll be able to do that totally," said Williams.