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Community Message - Settlement with City of Mount Vernon

Community Message - Settlement with City of Mount Vernon

Dr. K. Veronica Smith, Acting Superintendent of Schools: 

The Mount Vernon City School District is pleased to have reached two settlements of its dispute with the City of Mount Vernon regarding school taxes from the 2017-2018 and 2018-2019 school years to the District.

Under an initial settlement agreement from September, the District is receiving monthly payments from the City of $350,000 – this is set to be increased to $450,000 in July – to pay the balance of what the District is owed from back taxes. At one point, the City owed the District as much as $11.78 million. 

The settlement the District has recently agreed to with the City pays out $2.1 million in interest, which will help rectify the impact that the lost funding has had for the past seven years. During this time, the District was required to meet many of its own financial obligations without full tax funding, which put a strain on our finances. 

With the balance currently being paid off, and interest set to be paid to the District, we can utilize these funds to support the ongoing education of our students. 

“Despite this settlement, we are still in fiscal stress,” said In-House Counsel Royce Russell. “Moreover, we are discussing tax adjustments for future budgets while working to gain trust from the community to support strong educational programs and academic improvements.”

Our partnership with the City is vital to the District, and this resolution allows our partnership to continue to grow to benefit our students.

We would like to thank Attorney General Letitia James, State Senator Jamaal T. Bailey, State Assemblyman Gary L. Pretlow, Westchester County Executive George Latimer, Westchester County District Attorney Miriam E. Rocah, members of the City of Mount Vernon, especially Comptroller Dr. Darren Morton, and the residents of Mount Vernon for their support.

We are happy to put this issue behind us and are committed to using this opportunity to provide our students and taxpayers with comprehensive, high-quality educational programs.
 

Lowes Moore Q+A

Lowes Moore, MVHS Class of 1976 graduate, is a former NBA basketball star and coach, and he served as Executive Director and Director of Development at the Boys & Girls Club of Mount Vernon for 27 years. He now hosts a podcast and runs Lowes Moore Global Communications. 

View the Q+A with Lowes Moore here!

Students in a court room on steps.

Applications for the 15th annual Scales of Justice Academy (SJA) at Fordham University School of Law and The Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University have been extended and are open until Saturday, June 15, 2024. The program will begin on Monday, July 22, at both locations. Legal courses will be taught by over 40 volunteer judges, lawyers, law professors, law students and elected officials. scalesofjusticeacademy.org

Click here for the Fordham University SJA Application (July 22-31)

Click here for the Pace University SJA Application (July 22-26)

Students playing games.

On Wednesday, June 6, 2024, members of the Superintendent’s Advisory Council came to the Education Center from across the Mount Vernon City School District to convene their last meeting of the 2023-24 school year. The Superintendent’s Advisory Council is comprised of a group of student leaders selected from every school in the district.

President Kirwan, Dr. White and Dr. Smith.

Two Mount Vernon City School District administrators, Pennington Principal Dr. Melissa White and Director of Humanities Marybeth Rhodes, were honored at the Board of Education meeting on Tuesday, June 4, 2024. Acting Superintendent Dr. K. Veronica Smith and Board of Education President Lorna Kirwan presented the awards. 

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Dr. K. Veronica Smith, Acting Superintendent of Schools: 

The Mount Vernon City School District is pleased to have reached two settlements of its dispute with the City of Mount Vernon regarding school taxes from the 2017-2018 and 2018-2019 school years to the District.