The School Board approved this week a budget adjustment target of $2.5 million for the 2016-17 school year as part of the multi-year Right Sizing the Budget process. The adjustment is less than projected thanks to a slight increase in enrollment and a targeted effort to hold the line on department and program spending. The latter resulted in less deficit spending (use of reserves).
Initially, a $4.2 million budget adjustment was planned until the Oct. 1 enrollment count and the final ‘14-15 budget audit showed better than projected outcomes.
The $2.5 million budget adjustment includes staffing and operational reductions totalling $1.56 million and budget shifts of $950,000. A complete list is available here.
The district is in the second of a multi-year effort to bring spending more in line with revenue, which requires planned spend downs of its fund balance and the budget adjustments.
In June, the School Board approved $4 million in budget cuts and funding shifts, and a $2.7 million spend down of its reserves in order to balance the current year budget. It was the first year of the Right Sizing the Budget process.
The district continues to face short- and long-term budget challenges, despite the increase in state funding approved by legislators in last year’s session.
“State funding is tied to student enrollment, and while we saw a slight increase in enrollment over projections, flat to declining enrollment in prior years coupled with inflationary costs increasing by more than two percent each year resulted in the need to make additional reductions in next year’s budget and beyond,” said Rod Zivkovich, executive director of finance and support services.