Revised ISD 834 budget ‘tightest in years’


Assistant Superintendent of Business and Administrative Services Ray Queener presented what called one of the “tightest revisions in years” to the Independent School District 834 Board Thursday night.

The three areas of the 2012-2013 budget that were revised included the general, food-service and the community service funds. There were no other significant changes in other funds from the preliminary revised budget.

Queener said general fund revenues increased by $2.1 million from the preliminary budget and are now about $87.6 million due to increases in state aid, grants and integration partnerships. District expenditures are $92.3 million, an increase of $2.3 million due to increases in transportation costs, the addition of STEM and fab lab grants and inclusion of various carryovers, he added.

“Both the operating revenues and expenditures increased equally due to receiving grants and increased revenue because of higher than projected student numbers,” Queener said. “While the fab lab and the 3M partnership plan also have corresponding expenses.”

Remaining general fund balances are projected at $14.7 million while the unassigned fund balance is $9.6 million, according to Queener. He said the projected unassigned fund balance is about 10.4 percent of the total expenditures and is well above the five percent cushion that most districts like to keep in their accounts.

“This allows us to look at ’13-’14 with a much better picture than earlier,” Queener said. He is currently developing a revised budget forecast for 2013-2014 to determine necessary adjustments.

Specific category costs that increased included the food service and community service funds.

Food service fund costs increased 1.03 percent in the revenues from the original $3.87 million to $3.9 million due to the six cents-per-meal-reimbursement for the menu certification program.  Projected expenditures also increased 1.44 percent from about $3.88 million to $3.9 million that include equipment purchases and credit card fees. The food service fund has about $332,860 in its fund balance.

“We’ll continue monitoring this over the year,” Queener said.

The Community Service fund also had some increases in revenue and expenditures. The addition of a second five-day preschool program has increased revenue 1.89 percent. Expenditures also increased in this category by 2.12 percent due to hiring additional staff and operating costs of the new Early Childhood Family Center and transportation costs. Both expenditures and revenues total $4 million while the fund balance is $313,420.

The total of all funds involved in the school district’s budget is $108 million in revenue, $114 million in expenditures and a fund balance of $32.1 million.

The revenue breakdown includes: 72 cents of every $1 from state aid and credits, 21 cents of every $1 from property taxes, 3 cents of every $1 from federal aid and 4 cents of every $1 from other sources including grants and fees.

Queener said the budget would be revised again in spring 2013 which will include salary updates, grants and federal program adjustments.