The Waterville Times
Waterville, New York

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Serving the communities of Augusta, Brookfield, Deansboro,
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March 4, 2015 Front Page Headlines

Sectional Title Time!
In contemplating all that was at stake for the Waterville boys basketball team Sunday in the semifinal game vs. Onondaga, the list includes: Earning a win to return this Sunday to defend their Section Three Class C title; Keeping alive a season with the expectation of winning a state championship title in Glens Falls March 21; Winning to tie the best record in school history; Having a player become only the third boy in school history to reach 1,000 career points; And perhaps most importantly, wanting to keep together a bit longer a group of seniors who have over the last two years earned a combined 43-3 record. With all that causing some jitters amongst the players, a reasonable argument could be made that the Indians played their worst game of the year Sunday. Free throw shooting was below 50 percent and the misses were not even close. Shot percentage on the floor was generously around 30 percent. But what goes along with that performance is this: In beating Onondaga, the No. 5 seed exceeding expectations by being among the last four teams remaining, the Indians might have won their best game of the year. After falling behind, then catching and overcoming the Tigers for a 42-32 win, here is where Waterville stands today: They return Sunday for a 12:45 p.m. game vs. Immaculate Heart Central of Watertown for the Section Three title; They remain the No. 1 Class C team in the state with a chance to prove it in Glens Falls; They tied the best record in school history, matching the 1964-65 team that 50 years ago went 22-0 and won the Section Three championship; Zach Sawyer became the school’s third player in boys basketball history to score 1,000 points. This team, which has done so much right this year, showed that even when things don’t go right, they can find a way to win. For the Complete Article, Click Here to Subscribe!

Board Will Cut (your favorite thing)
For the Waterville Central School District Board of Education, planning the 2015-16 budget has turned into the $1.1 million question. Without state aid figures - which make up the bulk of the district’s revenue - for 2015-16, the budget discussion at last week’s board meeting focused on how to balance the projected $1.1 million deficit. That deficit, which is about 10 percent of the overall budget, comes from just rolling over this year’s budget without changes with this year’s state aid given. Expenses that are already locked in - such as raises and increases in the state retirement plan - account for the increase and gap with revenues. The state appears on track to miss its April 1 deadline to pass a budget. School districts, though, get no reprieve and have to approve budgets by early next month for the May 19 public vote. Waterville could fill in that $1.1 million gap by spending a huge portion of its savings. The district could also eliminate $1.1 million worth of non-mandated programs. Board president Bud Dorr said what will happen is a hybrid of those two choices. “We’ll use some of the fund balance and then we’ll have to make cuts,’’ he said. Those cuts will come in programs the state does not require. These include kindergarten, sports, some music and art, student clubs and activities and transportation for some students. “Do we need to look at kindergarten,’’ board member Susy Quayle asked. “Do I want to? No, but I guess we have to look at everything.’’ That means the Waterville boys basketball team doing so well this year might not be around to defend its titles next year. “People need to realize that is a possibility,’’ board member Russell Stewart said. “That’s how trapped the governor has made school districts by forcing us to consider those types of things.’’ Sports and student clubs cost the district about $300,000 a year in addition to the costs for transportation. All non-mandated programs, including kindergarten, cost WCS about $1.6 million a year. Stewart said he wants to know how much the district will spend on raises next year. “If every single person in this district declined a raise, what would that number look like?’’ he said. For the Complete Article, Click Here to Subscribe!

Changes In Place At Harding

For 62 years, Harding Nursing Home has provided senior care in Waterville using its four generations of Harding family members as its model. To offer better services on a cost-competitive basis with larger company-owned facilities, Harding will partner with a nursing home in Oswego. Informally the partnership has started and will formally be in place when the state Department of Health signs off on it. Judith Harding-Staelens, whose grandparents and parents ran the facility in their time, said the changes will mean enhanced services will be available. The partnership will also allow for both facilities to reduce operation costs by sharing and buying in larger quantities. “Two facilities can align and support each other and we share what we have,’’ she said. Harding owners spent the last year and a half looking for the right partner, finding that person in Joe Murabito. Murabito owns and operates the skilled nursing and rehab facility Morningstar Residential Care Center in Oswego. For the Complete Article, Click Here to Subscribe!

Village of Waterville Gets Top Rating
The state Office of the State Comptroller did a Fiscal Stress audit of the Village of Waterville recently. Municipalities are rated with significant fiscal stress, moderate fiscal stress, susceptible fiscal stress or with no designation. Waterville’s financial standing earned a no designation. With a score of 3.3 percent, the village fell under the average for other villages, which were at about 15 percent. Of the nine areas studied, Waterville received stress points in just one. The village was given a stress level of 2 for its debt service as a percentage of revenues.

Tax Help Available For Madison County
Madison County residents who earned less than $53,000 last year qualify to have tax preparation done free of charge. Daytime, evening and weekend appointments are available Mondays through Saturdays through April at locations throughout Madison County. Before calling for an appointment, have all tax documents and information available for review. In Madison County, appointments will be available at Community Action Partnership for Madison County in Morrisville, Department of Social Services in Wampsville, Caz Cares in Cazenovia, and the Gorman Community Center in Oneida. For an appointment, call Community Action Partnership for Madison County at 280-0889. Senior citizens are eligible for free tax return preparation regardless of income. For an appointment call Madison County Tax Counseling for the Elderly Program at 684-3001.

 


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Phone: 315-841-4105
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