Good Question: Are my school tax bills dropping?

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — Here’s a question many of you are asking.

School buildings have been shut down, kids took classes at home (and many will do that again in the fall), so why aren’t my tax bills going to shrink?

The short answer is COVID-19 costs and budget cuts.

By the end of this week, schools in NY must submit their reopening plans for final approval. It’s a big task. Not just for all the rules, but also figuring out the price tag to make sure they have the supplies to reopen.

Personal protective equipment, masks, temperature scanners and sanitizing products aren’t cheap. The School Superintendents Association estimates districts across the nation could spend up to $25 billion PPE and supplies.

The superintendent of Orleans-Niagara BOCES in Medina believes it averages out to $400-dollars per person. That includes students and staff.

That group is now leading a campaign to set up a co-op big program for districts so they can get what they need with bulk buying power. Financial help is also expected to come from the next federal relief package.

Will it be enough?

The governor has warned of 20% cuts across the board for state schools, governments and hospitals There’s also another costly trade-off here.

Districts are having to delay other equipment purchases that would come in a normal year to make sure they can have masks, gloves and everything else state rules mandate.