District prepares for drop of $400,000 in funding
Though navigating turbulent waters, the Basehor-Linwood School District is in a budget boat with good company.
At Monday night’s Basehor-Linwood School Board meeting, Superintendent Robert Albers and Assistant Superintendent David Howard outlined the district’s financial situation, citing that nearly every other district in the state was having the same issues.
“We’re all dealing with budget cuts,” Howard said. “Everyone’s having trouble.”
Albers said the published budget for USD 458 was a little more than $12 million, and the state had a remaining balance of only $17,000.
“With only $17,000 worth of room, we need to be prepared,” Albers said. “If any drop in revenue occurs in the next few months, we will need to make some additional cuts. Funds just won’t be available.”
The district received $100,000 less in state aid for the 2008-2009 school year than it expected, and Howard said it would receive $304,000 less than expected for 2009-2010.
“When you consider the $100,000 we already lost, we’re looking at $404,000 less than we projected in September for next year,” Howard said.
Howard and Albers also pointed out the state had discontinued funding for capital outlay requests. The district previously qualified for about $180,000 in state capital outlay funding, but it will no longer receive this aid.
District staff members have been brainstorming ways to save more money or qualify for more funding, Howard said, but nothing is concrete yet.
“It’s not a pretty picture, but we’re in this with a lot of company, and we’ll deal with it,” Howard said.
Also on Monday night, board members:
• Heard a report on Youth Friends, Care Cats and E-Mentors and recognized this year’s volunteers.
• Approved, 7-0, a three-year contract with Deffenbaugh for a new recycling program. Howard said Deffenbaugh would provide recycling Dumpsters for the schools, and the district would receive $12.50 for every ton of material it collected. Deffenbaugh will pick up and sort all the recyclables. Howard said the goal was to have Dumpsters in every building and in parking lots to serve the community. The program comes with no cost to the district.
• Heard a staffing report from Howard.
• Discussed end-of-the-year activities. Commencement is at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 14, in the Basehor-Linwood High School gymnasium.
• Heard a Kansas Association of School Boards spring regional report from board member Doug Bittel, who said the meeting focused on the state budget. Other districts, Bittel said, have been implementing energy-saving strategies in an effort to combat budget cuts.
• Discussed renewing the district’s lease with Apple.
• Heard a construction report from Chris Claflin, who said the district’s projects were moving along well considering the recent rainfall. Albers requested a tour of the new schools be arranged before the board’s June meeting.
• Approved, 7-0, all proposed changes to student handbooks.
• Approved, 7-0, capital outlay requests for 2009-2010.
• Approved, 7-0, Board of Education Policy JBC concerning homeless students for the first reading.
• Approved, 7-0, a contract with MAC Corporation in the amount of $181,972 for construction of Linwood Elementary School.
• Set 5:30 p.m. Monday, June 22, as the date for the 2009 wrap-up meeting.
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