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STATE TO PAY $950,000 IN PROPERTY TAXES UNDER STAR PROGRAM

About $950,000 in property taxes will be paid by the state under the school tax assessment relief program, known as STAR, according to John Forbes, business manager for the Fredonia Central School District.

"The impact may be the loss of $5,000 to $10,000 in interest income because we will get the money in January, not October," he said.

The School Board on Monday appointed a new trustee, Kelly Crise, who will serve until May 20, succeeding Molly Rodgers, who resigned to move out of state. The two years remaining in Ms. Rodgers' term will be on the ballot in May.

In a traffic matter, the board learned that the speed limit around the school has been lowered to 35 mph, school crossing signs have been posted and the word "school" has been painted in two locations, all on Route 20.

Superintendent James Coon reported that the district enrollment is holding steady, as 2,036 students were in school Sept. 10 compared with 2,053 last year.

The board accepted a $350 donation from the Brooke Memorial Hospital Auxiliary to be used for gifts of clothing and money to allow needy students to fully participate in extracurricular activities.

The board also discussed a parking problem. The district has 281 spaces on the East Main Street campus that can be used by faculty, staff and students. Forbes said there is a shortage of spaces.

Trustee Donald Nash said he is concerned about parking for construction crews once the $33 million renovation and construction project begins next summer.

Board President John Berner said this was the first thing discussed with the contractor, Ciminelli-Cowper. "An area in back of the building may be used," Forbes said.

Another concern was the lack of a teacher for a physics class that was scheduled to accommodate students enrolled in Fredonia State College's 3-1-3 program, in which students take both high school and college courses during their senior year. Coon said he had called every retired teacher and asked if a member of the college faculty would be willing to teach, but with no luck.

He assured the parents he will continue seeking a solution.

The board also approved a job description for a part-time position of assistant superintendent for instruction, who will report to the superintendent and work as a curriculum coordinator, chairman of the special education committee, be concerned with district library technology and be in charge of the adult education programs.

A search committee will be established, Coon said.

Hazel Conti, Route 83, a former School Board president, asked if the duties were too much for a part-time position.

"That's an excellent question, but that's all we can afford," Coon answered.

The board accepted the resignation of James Szwejbka Jr. as home-school coordinator. Coon said the district will seek to add a guidance counselor instead of hiring another person for this position.

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