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Ridgefield Park-Hasbrouck Heights Daily Voice serves Hasbrouck Heights, Little Ferry, Moonachie, Ridgefield Park & Wood-Ridge

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Little Ferry Schools Not Responsible For $1.5M Gap In Ridgefield Park

Talks between Little Ferry and Ridgefield Park over a $1.5 million budget gap have brought assurances there will be no attempt to increase tuition this year.
Talks between Little Ferry and Ridgefield Park over a $1.5 million budget gap have brought assurances there will be no attempt to increase tuition this year. Photo Credit: NJ Multiple Listing Service

LITTLE FERRY, N.J. -- The Little Ferry school district won’t have to pay extra tuition this budget year to make up for a $1.5 million shortfall in its sending district, Ridgefield Park.

Ridgefield Park Superintendent Eric Koenig reached out to Little Ferry Superintendent Frank Scarafile after his board meeting Jan. 7 to go over plans for filling the budget shortfall.

Koenig assured him Ridgefield Park won’t be trying to make any changes to the sending - receiving contract that would impose new tuition in the current year, according to a letter Scarafile sent to his board members.

The letter stipulated the following:

Little Ferry will not be responsible for any extra tuition monies this year, nor for previous years.

The sending-receiving contract, which is in its final year, expires on June 30, 2016.

Little Ferry pays a negotiated rate which is at or slightly below the state audited tuition cost for RPHS

The amount of tuition Ridgefield Park can charge is regulated by the state audited; it gives the true cost of the price of tuition; therefore there cannot be any outrageous increases.

The Board of Education, Donna Alonso, and Scarafile are working closely with Ridgefield Park to ensure that all students, especially ours, get the educational tools and support they deserve.

Eric Koenig, the current Superintendent in RP addressed the Board last night and reiterated the above.

Koenig continues to be unavailable to discuss the shortfall, or any plans for closing the budget gap by June 30, the end of the budget year.

Rich Vespucci, a spokesman from the state Department of Education, said the shortfall had been discovered early enough that there is “plenty of time” to find ways to economize.

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