Could Buffalo voters decide future city school budgets?

Jun 12, 2013

State Senator Mark Grisanti says he hopes to spark change in the Buffalo School District at a critical time. On Tuesday, the Senate passed a bill, introduced by Grisanti, that would allow city residents to vote on the school budget.

"I think the people of the city of Buffalo have the right, and should have the right, to be able to vote on the school budget, especially one that’s $800 million," said Grisanti.

Buffalo Board of Education voting in May 2013 on the school district budget
Credit WBFO News file photo

Citing a new study, the Republican Senator believes a changing economy will provide job opportunities to city students provided they are  better prepared. 

"When you have districts that do vote on school budgets, and parents and people in that district are involved, you actually have an increase on graduation rates and proficiency on tests," said Grisanti.

According to Grisanti, Crystal Peoples-Stokes is among those who will try to gain the bill's approval in the Assembly.

"I think that it is only right that the people of Buffalo be able to vote on their school budge. It is their tax dollars," said Grisanti.

Buffalo is one of just five New York districts in which residents do not on school budgets.  The Assembly, and ultimately Governor Cuomo, still need to approve the change.