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Board OKs 2005-'06 Mehlville budget that projects $2 million in deficit spending


June 22, 2005 - A budget for the 2005-2006 school year that projects more than $2 million in deficit spending was approved last week by the Mehlville Board of Education.

The board voted 6-1 June 16 to approve the fiscal 2005-2006 budget that projects total expenditures $96,105,837 with anticipated revenue of $94,086,255. Board member Karl Frank Jr. was opposed.

Despite the projected deficit, the district will not go into the red, but will dip into its reserves. Based on an anticipated fiscal 2004-2005 balance of $11,906,693, the district projects a fund balance of $9,887,111 on June 30, 2006.

For the coming school year, operating expenditures of $83,117,236 are projected with anticipated revenue of $80,403,483, an estimated shortfall of $2,713,753.

Despite the deficit, the operating fund — a combination of the general fund and the teachers' fund — the school district will not go into the red, but will dip into its operating fund balance that is projected at $6,271,489. After transferring $100,000 to the capital projects fund, an operating fund balance of $3,457,736 — 4.16 percent — is projected on June 30, 2006. Under state law, a school district is required to maintain a 3 percent balance in its operating fund or be considered a "distressed'' district.

For the current fiscal year, which will end June 30, operating expenditures of $79,350,402 are projected with anticipated revenue of $80,847,159, a surplus of $1,496,757. With a beginning balance of $4,749,009, after $25,722 is transferred from the capital projects fund, an operating fund balance of $6,271,488 — 7.90 percent — is projected for fiscal 2004-2005.

When the 2004-2005 budget was adopted last year, operating expenditures of $77,984,072 were projected with anticipated revenue of $77,883,635, a deficit of $100,437. With a beginning balance of $4,169,595, after transferring $300,000 to the capital projects fund, an operating fund balance of $3,769,158 — 4.43 percent — was projected when the 2004-2005 budget originally was adopted last year.

For 2004-2005, six administrative positions were cut, 42.5 teaching positions were reduced and 15.5 support services positions were cut. For 2005-2006, 1.5 administrative positions will be cut and at least one classified positions will be cut. No teaching positions will be reduced.

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