Fayette school board to consider cuts 12.24.08

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

Ohio school superintendents are expecting cuts in state aid, but the question remains about how severe the reductions will be.

Fayette superintendent Russ Griggs gave board of education members a preview of what the district could face.

Griggs told the board at the Dec. 15 meeting that the district should have a cash surplus of $131,677 at the end of the 2010-11 school year, based on current projections.

Griggs said he feels fairly comfortable with a forecast two years down the road, but anything beyond that extrapolates too far into the future.

State aid cuts, however, will change the district’s financial package severely. If the state were to cut funding by five percent—and the board did nothing in response—the 2010-11 balance could end up $500,000 in the red. A 10 percent could result in a $760,000 shortfall. Neither of those situations are legal under Ohio law, Griggs said.

“I am concerned with the projected deficit,” Griggs said after the meeting, “and I must present to the board a plan to balance the budget based on the levels of cuts we might receive.”

Griggs added that the district will receive less income tax revenue due to falling housing prices and probably an increase in delinquent property tax cases due to the economy.

It’s a not a pretty picture, he said, but noted that Fayette is certainly not alone. Griggs will present some possible cuts to the board at the Jan. 12 meeting.

Griggs said he’s had to deal with similar situations in the past and made it through.

“I don’t want to minimize this as though it’s not serious,” he told the board, “because it is serious.”

organizational—The board’s annual organizational meeting is scheduled at 7 p.m. Jan. 12, one week earlier than the usual monthly meeting date. The regular meeting will follow.

  • Front.little Ball
    Fayette's Demetrious Whiteside (left)Skylar Lester attempt to keep the ball from going out of bounds during Morenci's recent basketball tournament for fourth and fifth grade teams. Morenci's Andrew Schmidt stands by.
  • Front.tug
    MORENCI pep rallies generally end with a tug of war. The senior class entry, shown above, did not advance to the finals. Griffin Grieder, Alaina Webster, Kyle Long and Jazmin Smith are shown at the front of the rope, giving it their best effort.
  • Accident
    FAYETTE resident Patricia Stambaugh, 64, was declared dead on the scene of a single-vehicle accident Friday morning south of Morenci. Rescue units were called around 9 a.m., but as of Tuesday, law enforcement officers had not yet determined the time of the accident. According to Ohio State Highway Patrol, Stambaugh was driving west on U.S. 20 when her Chevrolet Malibu traveled off the north side of the road and down a steep embankment, coming to rest in Bean Creek (Tiffin River).
  • Athletic Fields
    SPORTS COMPLEX—Fayette’s outdoor athletic facilities will include three ball fields for summer recreation leagues at the southwest corner of the school. The baseball and softball fields, along with the running track, will be constructed on the east side of the school. Outdoor athletic fields were not part of the new school project from 2007, but voters approved a $1.4 million levy for a school addition and the sports fields last August. Both projects are scheduled to be complete by July 20.
  • Front.teacher Leading
    PRESCHOOL MUSIC—Fayette band director Jeffrey Dunford spends the last half hour of the day leading the full-day preschool class in musical activities. Additional photos are on page 7 of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.band
    TROMBONISTS Jake Myers (left) and Max Baker perform Friday at the annual Senior Citizens Luncheon at Fayette High School. The National Honor Society and the FFA chapter teamed up to serve a meal to area seniors and to provide musical entertainment. Both the school band and choir performed. Additional photos are on page 7 of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.

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