The Oneonta City School District Board of Education last night approved a budget of $33.7 million, which calls for a tax levy increase of 2.7 percent.

Interim Superintendent David Rowley is optimistic that this spending plan will also have the approval of the public.

"I believe this is a pretty good compromise between cuts and trying to keep the tax levy increase down to a reasonable amount, while at the same time not completely cutting programs," he said. "It's been a very difficult process for the board to go through. I don't think anyone wanted to cut anywhere near as much as we did, but we are in a position where we had to balance the budget."

The school board closed a $1.5 million budget gap through various cuts, including 15.3 positions. Among the proposed position cuts are core subject positions, including two math teachers are two English teachers. Additionally, seven employees will be laid off and sixth grade will be moved to the middle school.

The public will vote on the budget on May 21.