2023-24 Budget Info

Budget information from last year

Budget Information and Communications

Live stream of adoption of budget

Current Budget Newsletter (sent in the mail)

Budget Hearing Powerpoint

The most important story to understand this year is how the long term fiscal outlook has changed as a result of taxpayer support, federal money, and increased state aid.  Please compare the past 4 years of financial outlook below and see why WE NO LONGER EXPECT large tax increases in the foreseeable future.

Long Range (5yr) Financial Outlook as of 2/2023

Long Range (5yr) Financial Outlook as of 2/2022

Long Range (5yr) Financial Outlook as of 2/2021

Long Range (5yr) Financial Outlook as of 1/2020

Prior Year Newsletters for Comparison

2022-23 Budget Newsletter

2021-22 Budget Newsletter

2020-21 Budget Newsletter (2nd Vote)

2020-21 Budget Newsletter (1st Vote)

2019-20 Budget Newsletter

Fund Balance Analysis: (The reliance on fund balance has been corrected!)

Overview of Taxes – Video explaining how school taxes work using past examples

Notice on the full value tax rate below how we have gone from one of the highest rates to the lowest rate in the region over time.  We remain one of the lowest as we solve the revenue deficit.

Our tax rate continues to remain relatively low:


Special Education & Health Insurance cost per student – Chart

Special Education Spending Comparison – Chart

Health Insurance Spending Comparison – Chart


2023-24 Budget Summary

Three Part Budget

Tax Roll Exemptions

Administrative Compensation Report

Property Tax Report Card

ESSA Financial Transparency Report

NYS School Report Card

Assessment Rolls

Office of State Comptroller Statewide School Tax Rates

Capital Refinance Document from 2016 (Debt Service Payments)

STAR exemption/rebate:

Star Website – Sign up / Learn More

STAR Exemption Amounts

Article about changes to STAR

Will taxpayers lose the STAR rebate if the school exceeded the tax cap?

No, the STAR exemption or STAR credit (a newer methodology for new homeowners) is still in effect for individual taxpayers whether a district remains within the tax cap or not.

The property tax relief credit, which resulted in taxpayers receiving a check in or around the fall required a resident’s school district to be tax cap compliant.  However, that program, which began in 2016, was fully phased in 2019, and as a result, will not be available for 2020.  There is no rebate opportunity to lose this year.


How will this affect me?
We have developed a Tax Calculator so that each individual taxpayer can understand the increase.

Here are some examples:

Does this budget exceed the tax cap?
No.  The tax cap calculation is 3.06%.

How do we vote this year?
A Special District Meeting of the qualified voters of the Rensselaer City School District will be held at the Rensselaer City School District campus on Tuesday, May 16, 2022 between the hours of 12 noon & 9 p.m., prevailing time, at which time the polls will be opened to vote by voting machine.

What will the ballot look like?

2023 Ballot

How can I obtain an absentee ballot?
Applications for absentee ballots will be obtainable between 9:00 a.m. & 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, except holidays, from the Office of the Rensselaer County Board of Elections.

When are absentee ballots due?
The Rensselaer County Board of Elections must receive completed applications at least seven (7) days before the annual vote. Absentee ballots must be received by the Rensselaer County Board of Elections not later than 5:00 p.m., prevailing time, on Tuesday, May 16, 2023.

How do I find out if I am registered?
Call the Board of Elections at 518-270-2990.

How do I register to vote?
Call the Board of Elections at 518-270-2990.

How much do we spend compared to others?
According to the NYS Fiscal Transparency Report, our per-student spending is below both the county and the state average for spending.

What will happen if the budget does not pass?
Our budget will need to rely on fund balance again and potentially begin a cycle of fiscal crisis again.

What is RCSD Corporation?

The RCSD Corporation was established on June 1, 2006 for the purpose of assisting in the building of the the new school and to “promote the public good and lessen the burdens in the city and the county.” The corporation has its own board of directors, separate from the school board members. In carrying out is main purpose, the corporation owns the school building and grounds and leases both to the school district for a period of 30 years (beginning in 2006). Under the lease purchase agreement, Certificates of Participation (COPs) were issued in a trust and disbursing agreement, naming both the corporation and the school. The corporation, in association with the school, refinanced the COPs in 2016, at which time they were called. This allowed us to refinance the debt and experience a savings while maintaining the terms of the original agreement. These savings were immediately passed along to the taxpayers in the 2017 tax year.  The most recent summary of the fiscal information can be found on page 37 of the 2020 RCSD independent financial audit.

Why does the Board of Elections handle Rensselaer City School District’s vote and not other schools?

The canvassing of the ballots for Rensselaer’s annual election and budget vote is conducted pursuant to Election Law and not Education Law.

With the exception of Rensselaer, every Small City School District in the State has its elections governed by Article 53 of the Education Law Section 2601-a

Rensselaer’s elections are specifically included in Section 2502 of the Education Law.