California budget increases equate to no news for TTUSD | SierraSun.com

California budget increases equate to no news for TTUSD

Special to the Sun

TAHOE-TRUCKEE, Calif. — Recently, California Gov. Jerry Brown announced his January state budget proposal for 2015-16, including funding for education.

The budget proposal is very positive news for school districts in the state who receive state funding; however, the impact to Tahoe Truckee Unified School District is very minimal.

TTUSD is a Basic Aid school district, meaning that it receives the majority of its funding from local property tax revenues. Approximately 10 percent of all California school districts are Basic Aid districts, because their property tax revenue exceeds the funding per student that they would receive from the state.

The budget realities for TTUSD as a Basic Aid District:

There is no increase in per student funding for TTUSD based on the governor's proposal.

The governor's proposal includes a recommendation for one-time state funds to be used for the implementation of the California Common Core State Standards. If this occurs, TTUSD would qualify for the one-time funds. Other than that, there are no impacts, positive or negative, to TTUSD's overall budget.

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It remains beneficial for TTUSD to be a Basic Aid District, as the property tax revenue it receives exceeds the funding amount that would be provided by the state, even with the governor's new proposal.

TTUSD's Board of Education made the decision to deficit spend (using its reserves) in order to fund recent salary increases for staff and to add programs for students.

In order to mitigate potential decreases in property taxes and/or significant increases in enrollment, TTUSD has established a board policy specifying a range for adequate reserve levels. Currently reserves are at the bottom of this range.

TTUSD has a long-term plan to end deficit spending. For the 2015-16 year, the district will implement budget reductions, but it will be as far away from the classroom as possible. Planned budget reductions include supplies, professional services such as consultants, retirement attrition, and district office staff reductions. The goal is to implement reductions with the least impact to teaching and learning at the schools, including maintaining smaller class sizes.

TTUSD is committed to remain fiscal responsible while providing "pathways to possibilities and student success" for each of its scholars and retaining a high quality workforce.

This article was submitted to the sun by the Tahoe Truckee Unified School District. Visit ttusd.org to learn more.