Gantt supports RCSD’s request for state funding if district appoints monitor

Education

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Assemblyman David Gantt said he will support the Rochester City School District request for funding — if, and only if, the district takes on a fiscal and academic monitor.

“For far too long I have watched the kids in my district suffer while the Rochester City School Board continues to mismanage the finances of the Rochester City School District. Their actions come at the cost of our children’s future,” Gantt wrote in a statement Thursday.

The district is currently facing a multi-million dollar budget deficit and has requested state funding to help close that gap.

“I will support $35 million in emergency aid only if legislation is enacted that creates a strong fiscal and academic monitor that is selected by the New York State Education Commissioner and the Mayor of Rochester,” Gantt wrote in a statement on Thursday.

Earlier this week, RCSD Superintendent Terry Dade went to Albany where he lobbied for $35 million before the school year is out.

MORE | How RCSD got here: Timeline of events in district’s budget crisis

The district had a $30 million shortfall last year, and they’re trying to get ahead of what could be another mess come summer time.

“We would literally have to shut down schools before the end of the year, we wouldn’t make payroll to pay any of our employees the last month of school — so we would really be in dire straights if we had to find an additional $35 million this close to an end of a school year,” Dade said upon his return from Albany.

Dade added he’s still waiting for the big “yes” from Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office for those additional funds.

In Gantt’s statement, he called on the members of the Rochester Assemble and Senate delegations to support school governance legislation.

Check back with News 8 WROC as we will continue to update this developing story.

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