Greenville school board approves ‘positive’ budget


By Kelli Ameling • Last Updated 10:06 am on Friday, June 28, 2013

GREENVILLE — The Greenville Public Schools Board of Education passed a “positive” budget for the 2013-2014 school year.

The board held a special meeting on Monday to approve the proposed budget presented by Chief Financial Officer John Gilchrist.

Gilchrist explained there are a few unknowns that schools have to wait on from the state level, but, while doing the budget, he took those assumptions seriously.

“I would rather be conservative with what I am giving you,” he said.

The approved budget, which will go into effect Monday, is projected to have an estimated $2,635,942 in the fund balance as of June 30, 2014.

“We are sitting in a positive place and not a negative place,” said Superintendent Pete Haines.

According to the budget, there is assumed $32,158,200 in revenues coming in, which include local sources ($5,124,800), state sources ($25,578,700), federal sources ($1,263,700) and incoming transfers and other transactions ($191,000).

However, another $2,552,842 in total fund balance available to appropriate was added to that amount, including non-spendable ($97,457), assigned ($212,600) and unassigned ($2,242,785) funds, for a total of $34,711,042 in total funds available to appropriate.

There is a predicted $32,075,100 in expenditures assumed for the 2013-2014 school year.

Those amounts include basic programs ($14,523,000), added needs ($4,050,650), pupil ($1,710,000), instructional staff ($1,700,000), general administration ($436,550), school administration ($1,907,475), business services ($393,225), operations and maintenance ($2,588,475), pupil transportation ($1,340,475), central services ($789,150), other ($733,600), community services ($192,000) and outgoing transfers and other transactions ($1,710,500), giving the total of $2,635,942 estimated to be in the fund balance.

“For the first time in two years, we are not talking about not filling vacancies, cutting services or cutting our discretionary budget,” Gilchrist said. “It’s a relief that we did not have to have those discussions heading into the next school year. That being said, we are not out of the woods.”

Gilchrist explained a lot of the positive news for this budget is tied to one-time funding such as student achievement and best practices funding, which are subjected to renewal each year.

Some of the biggest differences from the 2012-2013 budgets include a projected student increase of 21 and the state putting some money back into education.

On the expenditure side, some differences include projected increase cost of the Michigan Public Schools Employees Retirement System (MPSERS) program and health insurance, staff costs and expansion of the Chinese immersion program.

Gilchrist said some expenditure decreases include reduced positions at the central offices building and the boiler upgrade cost, which will not be a recurring expense in this budget.

“I think John and the group did a fine job putting this together,” said board Treasurer James Anderson. “There’s a lot of assumptions we have to watch.”

 

In other business, the board…

• Discussed policy development, draft policy 722 – merit pay.

• Discussed energy bond refunding.

• Discussed refunding 2001 refunding bonds.

• Approved 2013 proposed tax levy.

• Approved 2012-2013 amended budget.

• Approved fiscal year 2013-2014 state aid borrowing resolution.

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