By DAVE GYMBURCH Staff writer

A public hearing on the Rome school district’s proposed 2012-13 budget will be held Wednesday night, followed by a Board of Education vote on tentative adoption of the $101.2 million spending plan and its 1.72 percent local tax levy increase.

The hearing is at 6 p.m. Wednesday in the Strough Middle School auditorium, 801 Laurel St., and the board’s regular meeting will be held afterward at about 6:30 p.m.

This is the first of two public hearings scheduled on the budget. Another hearing will be held on May 2, with the board to vote the same day on a final version of the budget that will be presented for district residents’ approval in the May 15 public election.

The initial hearing Wednesday will include a presentation by Superintendent Jeffrey P. Simons regarding budget details, followed by a question-and-answer session with the audience.

The proposed budget, up about $2.5 million from the current 2011-12 budget of $98.7 million, would maintain current academic and sports programs, Simons has said. It does not call for any layoff notices to be sent to district teachers. There could be fewer than five layoffs in support positions that are under individual contracts, according to Simons.

Simons told the board he considers the proposed budget a "sound and reasonable plan," calling it "positive" for taxpayers and the community overall. Among steps to balance the budget are using about $4.67 million from the district’s fund balance/reserves, which still would leave about $8 million in that category which is similar to a savings account.