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BOCES Surplus 101

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• BOCES Surplus is money that was not spent during the year. As such, it is returned to the component school districts.

• BOCES Surplus is a mandated accounting process that protects school districts and taxpayers because excess funds are always returned. Could you imagine if your village/town/county returned some of your taxes at the end of each year?

• Unlike businesses and school districts, BOCES begin each year with a $0 balance. Meaning, by law, they are very limited on how they can reserve funds. In layman's terms, BOCES are not allowed to maintain a savings account.

• BOCES annual costs are set to handle unexpected liabilities, such as energy increases, and fluctuations in student enrollment. This ensures that BOCES are not requesting critical, operational funds from school districts in the middle of the school year. Schools districts are responsible to pay for any budgetary deficiencies. This could wreak havoc on a school district budget.

• BOCES budgets are prepared prior to school districts making commitments about service subscriptions – as a result, they are at best estimates and predictions. BOCES are required by law to prepare their budgets over 18 months in advance of the last day of the school year.

• BOCES are complex yet highly effective entities that help schools and municipalities share resources and contain costs. Due to our cooperative nature, BOCES have been cited as a model  for cost savings in New York State. We always look forward to the opportunity to better serve in  the most cost effective ways.

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