East Ramapo owes Rockland BOCES $5 million for tuition and services that is more than 90 days overdue.
The state education commissioner set requirements for the district for January 2, which were not followed. A second deadline of January 16 was set. Rockland BOCES Superintendent Mary Jean Marsico said if there has not been any payment and the deadlines passed, BOCES will have to put alternative plans into place, which she would not disclose.
“We will take action after the 16th if there is failure to comply with the commissioner’s directive,” she said.
At last week’s Nanuet school board meeting, Superintendent Mark McNeill went over the possible actions East Ramapo may take and its effects on surrounding school districts.
“If they don’t pay their bill, it does impact us,” said McNeill. He gave three possible scenarios and their consequences (these impacts may or may not happen):
If East Ramapo decides to not pay and pull all their students from BOCES:
- The per student may increase for all other districts that have students in the BOCES program
If East Ramapo decides to not pay, but continue to have students in the BOCES program:
- BOCES may have to look at cuts in programs and/or personnel
If East Ramapo decides to borrow money to pay the $5 million:
- “East Ramapo may ask local districts to pay for the interest on (East Ramapo’s) loan.”
The following day after Nanuet's Tuesday night board meeting, East Ramapo School District Superintendent Joel Klein assured Marsico Wednesday morning the district would pay its bill, but gave very few details and would not set a specific payment date or amount.
East Ramapo along with North Rockland sends the most students of all eight Rockland districts to BOCES. Of East Ramapo’s 272 students 176 are enrolled in special education classes and 76 are in its career and technical training programs. In response to the late payment, BOCES froze its spending and has asked vendors for payment periods longer than 30 days so it can meet its payroll.
Related Patch Articles:
- Rockland BOCES Holds Meeting On East Ramapo Shortfall
- East Ramapo Nonpayment Could Impact All BOCES Students (VIDEO)
- Possible Progress In Payment Due Rockland BOCES