Not much change in school district’s bud­get

Antelope Valley Press - - Front Page - By AL­LI­SON GATLIN Val­ley Press Staff Writer

CAL­I­FOR­NIA CITY — The Mo­jave Uni­fied School District’s first bud­get up­date showed little change from when it was ap­proved in June, As­sis­tant Su­per­in­ten­dent for Busi­ness Keith Gainey said.

He pre­sented the first in­terim re­port to the Board of Trus­tees on Dec. 12, with it show­ing a snapshot of the District’s fi­nances up to Oct. 31.

Over­all, the bud­get will re­quire dip­ping into the District’s re­serves this year, but it still re­ceives a pos­i­tive cer­ti­fi­ca­tion and is in the black in the fu­ture years’ pro­jec­tions.

The rev­enue fore­cast re­mains largely un­changed, with en­roll­ment pro­jected at 2,841 stu­dents and an es­ti­mated av­er­age daily at­ten­dance of 2,646.

The District’s ac­tual av­er­age daily at­ten­dance now stands a bit lower, at 2,602, for a 93.3% at­ten­dance rate. The District’s at­ten­dance goal is 94%, which it was able to reach at the start of last year, but fell to 93.54% over­all by the end of the year.

The rev­enue, as based on at­ten­dance, will hold as long as the District’s at­ten­dance does not de­crease by as little as 20 stu­dents, Gainey said.

“This bud­get doesn’t work if I re­duce that 20 kids in ADA,” he said. “We re­ally need the 2,602 ADA that we have now to hold up un­til April.”

The rev­enue also re­flects the end of a par­cel tax that ex­pired in the pre­vi­ous fis­cal year, that had been in place for five years.

How­ever, it also re­flects $5.1 mil­lion in rev­enue from bonds sold from a voter-ap­proved mea­sure in Novem­ber 2008. Th­ese funds must be used for con­struc­tion projects for the District’s two Mo­jave cam­puses, as spec­i­fied by the mea­sure. A con­struc­tion com­mit­tee will be formed to de­ter­mine projects and time­lines and an over­sight com­mit­tee will be as­signed to over­see the spend­ing.

“It goes all the way back to the au­tho­riza­tion in 2008 and we were fi­nally able to sell this year,” Gainey said.

Com­pared to the orig­i­nal bud­get, the ex­penses in the first in­terim re­port show ac­tual costs, re­flect­ing the staffing changes made be­tween the end of the 20182019 school year and the start of the cur­rent year.

“I know who’s here now, what the cost is now, so all that’s in­cluded in the first in­terim re­port,” he said.

The orig­i­nal bud­get uses pro­jected per­son­nel costs based on the staffing of the year that just ended.

The re­port also in­cludes the most re­cent fig­ures for con­tri­bu­tions to re­tire­ment funds.

The per­son­nel costs in­clude a 3.26% cost of liv­ing in­crease this year, as well as 3%, 2.8% and 3.16% in the fol­low­ing three years.

How­ever, th­ese ex­pen­di­tures do not in­clude pend­ing salary set­tle­ments due to ne­go­ti­a­tions for ei­ther the cur­rent year or the pro­jec­tions into fu­ture years, Gainey said.

With ne­go­ti­a­tions con­tin­u­ing, he noted that the im­pact of what was de­cided just that week, is about $400,000 that will be taken from re­serves.

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