Updated numbers show balanced budget for D300
By Emily McFarlan Miller firstname.lastname@example.org September 9, 2013 11:40PM
Updated: October 12, 2013 6:09AM
ALGONQUIN — Community Unit School District 300 CFO Susan Harkin returned to the board of education Monday night with an update to the district’s proposed 2014 budget.
After discussing the proposed budget with the board finance committee and reviewing updated numbers from the state of Illinois, Harkin said, “On one hand, we get money; on the other hand, the state takes money away.”
But that still would leave District 300 with a balanced budget.
A change in the way Illinois calculates the general state aid the Carpentersville-area district receives means it will get an additional $4.4 million, according to the CFO.
But the state also is cutting the district’s transportation funding by $800,000, she said.
And the district ended up hiring about 10 more teachers than it initially had projected in negotiations with the teachers union this winter. With that has come increased costs for insurance and supplies, such as teacher desks and materials, textbook and technology, she said.
The district also added another $300,000 to spend on technology into the budget after goal-setting discussions last month named technology a priority in its strategic plan. It currently is struggling to maintain its current level of technology, according to Harkin.
“We heard loudly from you that the strategic plan had the desire to look at technology and really focus on that,” she told the school board.
All that leaves the proposed budget balanced at just over $200 million, less than $100,000 to the good, she said.
District 300 initially had projected a $2.2 million deficit during contract negotiations and planned to deficit-spend over three years, until the economic development area around Sears headquarters in Hoffman Estates that froze property taxes expires, and kicks tax money back into the district. It later adjusted that expected deficit amount to $1.9 million.
The school board will vote on the proposed budget after a public hearing at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 23, at Westfield Community School, 2100 Sleepy Hollow Road.