School District Re-Votes Around the Corner

June 17, 2013 Updated Jun 17, 2013 at 4:21 AM EDT

By Rachel Elzufon

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June 17, 2013 Updated Jun 17, 2013 at 4:21 AM EDT

Clarence, NY (WKBW) - Round two of the school budget battles take place on Tuesday, June 18th.

Voters will cast their ballots again, to decide the financial fate of six local school districts.

Voters in the Alden, Clarence, Lewiston-Porter, Niagara-Wheatfield, Wilson and Bemus Point School Districts are all heading back to the polls.

In Clarence, the controversial tax levy increase was dropped from nearly 10-percent to 3.6-percent. In addition, dozens of teachers face layoffs and many extra-curricular activities are being dropped.

"If the budget doesn't pass, it's going to mean another $1.2 million in cuts, a substantial number of additional staff being cut -- and the way the School Board President described it as is educational insolvency," says Matt Stock, with Keep Clarence Schools Great.

There is more unity in Clarence, after a bitter fight between groups for and against the first budget. The organizations originally opposed to the Clarence budget, now back the new proposal.

However, that does not mean that everyone is convinced.

"I'm still undecided," says Clarence resident Patrick Krey. "You still want to make sure they're looking at the long term picture and how to deal with cutting costs, and not just raising taxes to pay the bill."

In Niagara-Wheatfield, the tax levy increase dropped from nearly six-percent for 4.5-percent.

"These children deserve to have a good education, and all these extra sports and activities," says Sanborn resident Norma Kroening.

Another local voter, Carl Becken, says, "they should combine more things in the school districts. You can't keep reasoning these taxes going up year after year after year after year."

Other cuts will hurt middle school teaching jobs, sports and extra-curricular programs.

This time around, Wilson will have a tax levy increase of two-percent, Lewiston-Porter will have a tax levy increase of 3.95-percent and Alden's will increase 1.48-percent.

In many cases, jobs are on the chopping block too.

Bemus Point is reportedly putting the same budget on the ballot as before.

The re-votes take place on Tuesday.

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