Board discusses budget deficit

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Board discusses budget deficit

Nathalia Wyss, Staff Writer

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The Palisades Charter High School Board of Trustees held a special meeting on Oct. 4 to discuss the budget deficit and voted to ask school officials to look for ways to reduce the deficit.

Chief Business Officer Greg Wood said that the school accumulated a $904,000 deficit in the 2017-18 school year, and he had estimated a $471,000 deficit for the 2018-19 school year. Wood said the main factors contributing to the deficit are lower average daily attendance, decreased transportation ridership and decreased funding from the California Department of Education.

“When the school first became an independent charter in 2003-04, all of our transportation was paid for by LAUSD,”  Wood said. He then elaborated on this point by showing how transportation costs changed from year to year.

Wood asked the Board to task the Budget Committee and other school officials with making cuts necessary to balance the school’s budget over the next two years. After deliberation, Board members voted 4-1 in favor of a motion to reduce spending by $1.3 million this year.

“The only way we are going to reach the number the Board has just approved is either increase in revenue, or decrease in expenses,” Wood explained.

In terms of increasing revenue Wood informed the Board that revenue might be increased by as much as $50,000 by issuing more Civic Center permits for facilities use for filming, sports events and other endeavors.

Wood also informed the Board that about $150,000 could be saved by not hiring teachers to fill positions vacated by teachers who left the school.

Wood said he wanted to cut expenses by $100,000 stating that, the school “had some discussions savings relative to, class sizes, auxiliaries [and] changes for efficiency sake.”


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