Assemblyman Peter Abbate

September 2009


Recent Community School Projects Improve Conditions for Students

In order to meet the needs of our growing school age population, as well as bring schools into the 21st century, a number of local schools have been expanded, updated and built to accommodate the children and families in our area.

Additionally, over the past several years, more than $50 million has been spent on renovations of local school, including:

“Our commitment to education will not only help the state weather this economic storm but will relieve the burden on local taxpayers by providing the extra resources we need to educate children throughout the state.”

Assemblyman Peter Abbate Continues
His Commitment to Education

As a new school year begins, I wanted to update you on the difficulties we faced in crafting this year’s state budget. It was extremely difficult because we found ourselves with a $17.7 billion budget gap – the largest ever in state history. Part of the fiscal challenge we face is the $12 billion in anticipated revenue based on annual growth that simply evaporated. We could not have predicted the magnitude of the financial collapse on Wall Street or foreseen the billions that unexpectedly left our state’s treasury. The lost revenue is what the state relies on to fund schools and hospitals, and to balance the budget.

The budget could have been a disaster for schools, students and taxpayers. Yet, even during the worst economic downturn in decades, we maintained our strong commitment to educating our children and providing them with the tools and skills they will need to compete successfully for the jobs of the 21st century.

The budget lifts the freeze on reimbursable expense-based aids, including transportation, building aid and BOCES – ensuring school districts have access to the funds they need. Overall, schools will benefit by an estimated increase of $403 million over the 2008-2009 school year. Foundation aid for the 2009-2010 school year will remain at current levels. The Assembly continues its historic commitment to foundation aid by phasing in full funding over three years, a year earlier than the executive’s proposal, starting in 2011-2012.

The budget also uses federal funds to help local school districts over the next two years, including:


“I want to thank the residents of our community for the letters, phone calls and e-mails they sent regarding issues in the budget. Your input was invaluable and helped shape a budget with better choices.”

Making an Investment in Higher Education

Recognizing the significant economic development impact of the City University of New York (CUNY) and State University of New York (SUNY), the budget invests:

In addition, the budget restores:

Through counseling, tutoring, financial assistance and drop-out prevention, these programs are dedicated to encouraging enrollment in college, and helping ensure success.

Assemblyman Peter Abbate
8500 18th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11214 (718) 236-1764 • 6419 11th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11219 (718) 232-9565