Three Village administrators asked for $130,000 in cuts to the athletic program, and that's what they got.
Erin Blaney, Three Village's executive director of health, physical education and athletics, on Tuesday delivered a breakdown of how the district will achieve those savings with minimal impact on the athletic program as a whole. She called it an "extremely difficult" process that took about six weeks, but which would yield savings of $130,282 if the school board accepts the recommendations.
"We went through to see exactly what would be the least amount of impact on the student athletes to try to keep the integrity of the athletic programs," she said.
Currently, the district fields 90 interscholastic teams: 31 at the varsity level, 16 at the junior varsity level, and 43 seventh- and eighth-grade teams. Last year, the district cut four JV-9 teams from the program.
Under the reductions Blaney identified, two teams – boys' and girls' varsity bowling teams – would be eliminated altogether, which would save the district more than $28,000 after the overhead and transportation costs are taken into account.
Among the other cuts to the athletic program:
- Elimination of 11 coaching positions, mostly at the junior varsity and assistant varsity levels, which would save more than $69,000.
- Reductions in supervision and security that would prohibit spectators at scrimmages, see reduced supervision and security at games, and alter the start time of indoor wrestling, volleyball, and basketball contests on both the varsity and junior varsity levels for a savings of more than $14,500.
- Reductions in transportation to athletic contests that would limit varsity teams to one away scrimmage and one away non-league contest, as well as eliminate away scrimmages and non-league games for junior varsity teams, for a savings of $13,000.
- Cuts to the athletic supplies and materials area, which would reduce the amount of funds available for uniforms and awards, for a savings of $10,000.
- Reductions in first aid/CPR/AED training for the coaches provided by the school, for a savings of $4,000.
The $130,000 in cuts to the athletic program were in line with a school budget that includes a 4.5 percent tax levy increase, according to Jeff Carlson, assistant superintendent for business services. Should the district choose to go with a 3 percent tax levy increase, more reductions from the athletic program may be necessary, he said.
Noticeably absent from the athletic budget discussions was mention of the athletic trainer, a position that students, parents, and coaches fought hard to keep in the budget last year as the district was developing its 2011-2012 budget.
"She is an integral part of our athletic program," Blaney said. "My feeling is if we're having athletics, we will have the athletic trainer. The amount that she brings in terms of health and safety of our student athletes is immeasurable."
Interim superintendent Neil Lederer said the cuts suggested wouldn't change the core athletics program.
"It maintains the integrity of our program," Lederer said.