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East Moriches schools get good budget news

A recent audit by the state comptroller of the East Moriches School District has found that significant revenue and expenditure projections in the tentative 2012-13 budget are reasonable and that the district’s proposed budget complies with the property tax levy limit.

An April 2 letter from the office of State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli noted that auditors requested the district’s tentative budget, salary schedules, debt payment schedules and other pertinent information.

“We identified any significant new or unusually high revenue or expenditure estimates, made appropriate inquiries and reviewed supporting documentation to determine the nature of the items and to assess whether the estimate was realistic and reasonable,” read the letter from DiNapoli’s office to Charles Russo, superintendent of schools.

Auditors found that the proposed budget complies with the state 2 percent tax levy cap. The budget includes a tax levy of $17,803,436, which increases the 2012-13 levy by 2.28 percent over the 2011-12 levy of $17,407,290. The tax cap requirement does allow several exemptions which can raise the limit beyond 2 percent — in East Moriches’ case, to 2.8 percent.

The total amount of the 2012-13 budget is $24,570,067 and maintains all programs, Russo said. The board will vote on the budget later this month.

“We’re pleased,” Russo said yesterday. “We have had two years in a row of no recommendations from the comptroller’s office. Overall we are pleased with the way our budget process has gone.”

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