BOE resolution: Boundary Line Alteration

The following resolution was approved by the Monroe-Woodbury Central School District Board of Education at a regular meeting on August 23, 2017.

WHEREAS, the Board of Education of the Monroe-Woodbury Central School District has been informed of a recent application pending before the Orange County Legislature for the creation of a new town currently referred to as “Town of Palm Tree” separate and apart from the Town of Monroe;

WHEREAS, the Village of Kiryas Joel has already annexed 164 incorporated acres, located within the Town of Monroe and modified its borders accordingly;

WHEREAS, a petition has been filed and is pending before the Orange County Legislature to place on the ballot a proposition to the voters of the Town of Monroe to create a new town to be named the Town of Palm Tree which Town of Palm Tree will ultimately have boundaries coincident with the Village of Kiryas Joel and an additional unincorporated 56 acres located within the Town of Monroe;

WHEREAS, concomitantly, a change of the boundary of the Monroe-Woodbury Central School District has been proposed by Kiryas Joel Union Free School District to mirror the boundaries of the proposed Town of Palm Tree including the aforesaid 164 acres together with an additional 56 acres of unincorporated property located within the boundaries of the Town of Monroe adjacent to the Village of Kiryas Joel;

WHEREAS, the Board of Education of the Monroe-Woodbury Central School District is responsible in all respects for the superintendence, management and control of the School District;

WHEREAS, the Board of Education has a fiduciary duty to the taxpayers of the community to assure the prudent and economical use of public moneys in the best interests of the taxpayers of the School District;

WHEREAS, in furtherance of these responsibilities to the taxpayers, residents, staff, and students of the School District, the District Administration has undertaken a comprehensive study and analysis of the impact to the School District should the boundaries of the District change;

WHEREAS, the School District retained Questar III BOCES to study the impact of annexation and to forecast the long term impact on the School District’s instructional, operational and financial future relative to a boundary change;

WHEREAS, the School District established a Boundary Line Alteration Committee to discuss the potential boundary alteration, to share data regarding the number of affected children in the annexation area and their best educational interests, the potential fiscal impact of the boundary alteration on both school districts, community relationships and related matters;

WHEREAS, the School District also engaged the local municipalities in its quest for assessment data, parcel information, tax revenue figures, and associated information;

WHEREAS, the information obtained through these complex conversations and methodical studies has shown that the School District will yield a significant loss of tax revenue which will impact the School District’s operations;

WHEREAS, the School District has engaged and will continue to engage local and State representatives in an effort to secure additional funding to mitigate the impact that the recurring lost tax revenue will have on the School District;

WHEREAS, the School District has received assurances from local and State representatives that they will work legislatively to secure funding through special or amendments to existing legislation including reorganization aid;

WHEREAS, the Kiryas Joel Union Free School District has represented to the School District that it will support any proposed legislation in aid of the School District;

WHEREAS, the Kiryas Joel Union Free School District has represented to the School District that it is supportive of the efforts of the Monroe-Woodbury Central School District to mitigate its anticipated loss;

WHEREAS, the Kiryas Joel Union Free School District has represented to the School District that it will assume the costs for out-of-district tuition and transportation for any current resident within the annexed areas described herein who wishes to attend a school in the Monroe-Woodbury Central School District; and

WHEREAS, based upon these representations and balanced with the findings of the School District’s due diligence, research and analysis, the best interests of the students, and the community at large, the District Administration recommends the modification of the Monroe-Woodbury Central School District’s boundaries to the extent hereinafter set forth.

NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Board of Education of the Monroe-Woodbury Central School District pursuant to Section 1507 of the New York State Education Law, hereby determines that the best interest of the School District is promoted by modification of the School District’s boundaries as hereinafter set forth herein, and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Board of Education of the Monroe-Woodbury School District hereby consents to the proposed boundary alteration between the Monroe-Woodbury Central School District and the Kiryas Joel Union Free School District, to mirror the boundaries of the proposed Town of Palm Tree consisting of 220 acres including both the aforesaid 164 acres together with an additional 56 acres of unincorporated property located within the boundaries of the Town of Monroe adjacent to the Village of Kiryas Joel, as shown on the map attached hereto as Exhibit A, expressly subject to:  1) the creation of the Town of Palm Tree including the aforesaid 220 acres which shall include both the aforesaid 164 acres together with an additional 56 acres of unincorporated property located within the boundaries of the Town of Monroe adjacent to the Village of Kiryas Joel, by the voters of the Town of Monroe pursuant to the proposition to be submitted to the voters by the Orange County Legislature, and 2) provided that the aforesaid boundary alteration is consented to by the Kiryas Joel Union Free School District by September 6, 2017.  In the event that the foregoing two conditions have been satisfied, the effective date of the school district boundary alteration shall be the July 1st next following the establishment of the Town of Palm Tree, and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Board of Education directs that the Superintendent of Schools post haste submit a certified copy of this resolution to the District Superintendent of schools, and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Board of Education of the Monroe-Woodbury hereby agrees with the Board  of Education of the Kiryas Joel Union Free School District that upon the written request of any current resident within the annexed areas, to permit the attendance of any such resident’s child in the Monroe-Woodbury Central School District in accordance with Board policy, with the Kiryas Joel Union Free School District paying the state approved non-resident tuition rate to the Monroe-Woodbury Central School District and providing transportation of such children to Monroe-Woodbury Central School District; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that based upon the representations of the Kiryas Joel Union Free School District, the Board of Education of the Monroe-Woodbury Central School District agrees to cooperate with and actively support the efforts of Assemblyman Skoufis to seek special state legislation to provide additional aid for the Monroe-Woodbury Central School District to reduce the burden upon the Monroe-Woodbury Central School District taxpayers as a result of the significant loss of school property tax revenue due to the boundary alteration.