School Cuts = $130K

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Next year’s school budget got a $129,500 haircut by the town council on May 24, following its narrow defeat at the hand of voters in April.

The move cuts the tax increase on the average Secaucus home to $65.50 from the proposed $74.

Members of the town council and school board finalized the trim — which mostly affects utilities and maintenance — in a joint meeting last week before forwarding the 2012-13 budget to the state. Both sides agreed the proceed was much less contentious than last year, when the budget’s defeat led to $1.1M in cuts by the council.

“It was a lot different than last year,” said xxx Ward Councilman Rob Costantino. “Hopefully next year the budget passes and the board of education can handle that whole process themselves.

Voters rejected a $31.6M tax levy at the polls April 17 by two votes, 943-941, a margin found to be a vote after further review April 24.

The council initially pitched a more than $319K cut, but returned funds for two elementary school teachers and field improvements.