BOCES Surplus

  • BOCES surplus is a mandated accounting process that protects school districts and taxpayers because excess funds are always refunded.
  • BOCES refund is revenue that is often derived due to an increase of purchased services above and beyond the initial service request of component districts and not spent during the year. As such, it is returned to the component school districts.
  • 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.
  • BOCES budgets are prepared prior to school districts making commitments about service subscriptions. As a result, BOCES budgets are at best estimates and predictions. BOCES are required by law to prepare their budgets more than 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 their cooperative nature, BOCES have been cited as a model for cost savings in New York state.