Lazar Teacher: 'We Are Down to the Bare Bones'
Some Montville residents feel there is still room left for cuts to the budget, others say last year's cuts were enough.
After last year's school budget was voted down and cuts were subsequently made, some residents feel that there is no room left for further cuts, but others argue that there is always room to trim some more.
Lazar Middle School language arts teacher Judy Gothelf, voting at the municipal building on Wednesday evening, made the argument that when the schools suffer, the whole town suffers.
"Every time we don't pass a budget we become a less desirable place to live," Gothelf said. "I don't think there is any room left for cuts...we are down to the bare bones...see how many teachers are spending their own money for supplies."
Roy Van Tecker, who worked for decades as a director of facilities in the Bergen County Technical School system, and previously worked at Hunterdon Central High School, said that although he cannot discuss any specifics about Montville's school system, he feels there is always room for cuts.
"There is always fat, there is always the same game that goes on," Van Tecker said. "They'll always cut the most politically insensitive things...unless you defeat the budget, they never get the message.
"Someone has to step up to the plate and say enough is enough."
Linda Mesce, a mother with three children in the district, said that after last year's cuts, there shouldn't be further cuts.
"At this point it's bare bones," Mesce said.
Dick Gansby, who made his way to vote with his wife Pat and son Adam, said that although he feels last year's budget should have been voted down, "they've done a good job holding the line this year."
"They stayed within the parameters, not above 2 percent," Pat Gansby said, referring to this year's local tax levy increase of 1.5 percent, which falls under Gov. Christie's state mandated cap.
This year's budget proposal totals at $67,763,621.
Patch will post the results of the school election as they are made available.