ROGERS CITY - After factoring in revenue and an estimated future pupil count, Rogers City Area Schools officials have come up with a budget for the 2012-13 school year.
Superintendent Kathleen Makowski briefly reviewed this budget at a public hearing Monday evening in the Rogers City High School library. School board members passed it shortly afterward during the regular meeting.
The budget projects revenue of $4,654,840, with expenditures higher at $4,535,810. The district will use some of its fund balance to make up the difference, as well as to hire a middle school teacher, Makowski said.
"The number of students makes it necessary to add this position in the best interest of student growth and achievement," she told board members.
Expenses are projected to be down from the previous school year, during which the board spent $4,748,435, Makowski said. The district has looked at many options for saving money, including the closing of the Grambau Center.
"The district's done a really good job of keeping our expenses as low as we can," she said after the meeting.
Total revenue decreased from the previous school year, in large part due to the end of one-time money and reductions in some specific federal funds, Makowski said. These include EduJobs money, an emergency funding bill passed to prevent teacher layoffs, as well as decreases in Title I and Title II funds. The first is a program aimed at giving extra funding to districts with a high percentage of students from low-income families, while the second is meant to help school districts recruit high-quality teachers and improve academics.
Fortunately, the district was able to make up for some of this, Makowski said.
"We had a loss of one-time funds, and we've been able to move some things around and make up that difference," she said.
Rogers City, like every district in Michigan, will pay more toward retirement for the next school year, Makowski said. The state had given the district extra money to help offset last year's increase. While the state won't be giving money specifically for this purpose again this year, lawmakers have budgeted an extra $120 per pupil for districts receiving the minimum per-pupil funding. Rogers City is one such district, and this money will more or less offset the higher retirement cost rate.
While Makowski said she hopes the state will restore the $450-per-pupil cut from schools in 2011, things could have been worse this year.
"Really, overall as far as budgeting goes, since it wasn't a significant decrease in the allocation, it wasn't as difficult as it could've been," she said.
In other business:
Jordan Travis can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 358-5688.