Rockland Responds: East Ramapo Central School District Board President Shimmy Rose Replies to Taxing Question
We all know that the Jewish population in Rockland is b”H growing by leaps and bounds. This means we have a substantial increase in our tax base.
I can understand some tax rates, especially county-wide, will stay the same because they are based on how many people need the service like garbage pick-up, sewer, police, emergency services, etc. Yet, school taxes, especially in the East Ramapo school district, do not reflect this simple logic - as many more frum people have moved in, but fewer require public school services.
I realize that a small percentage of the school budget goes to fund some private school services, which have increased due to the population increase. If, in rough numbers, the population has increased two-fold, why haven’t the taxes been cut by about half?
Concerned Tax Payer
In response to your question, your point about a decreasing public school population is incorrect. The number of public school children has actually increased significantly recently. Over the past few months, we have had over 900 students new public school students requiring English Second Language help. The ERCSD is required to provide mandated services to help them in a district that already has over 10,000 public school students.
As for the increased number of heimish people moving in, that is correct. More people are moving and paying taxes, but the more kids that move in, the greater the need for transportation. The transportation budget for this year alone is over 60 million dollars. So those increased taxes are going to families who need busing, and the costs for that are very high.
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