When people think of the month of June, most think about students being out for the summer, family vacations, working on the farm or just enjoying the warm weather. On a School District level, the month of June means the adoption of the budget for next fiscal year and the closing of the current fiscal year budget. State law requires all school districts to adopt a budget for the next fiscal year prior to June 22. I would like to inform the public of a Board Work Meeting that will be held on June 11 at the District Office at 10:00 am. No Board action will be taken at this meeting; the Board will be reviewing and making suggestions on the FY14 budget. The Board will hold a Budget Meeting on June 13 at Panguitch High School at 4:00 pm to amend the FY13 budget and adopt the FY14 budget. The public is invited to attend both meetings. The District budget is probably the single most important publication the District provides to the local citizens. The preliminary budget for FY14 can be found on the District web page. The budget not only includes the finances for District, it also covers staffing ratios, testing data, transportation information, and the plans to allocate the money to next year. A few highlights from the budget include, Garfield County School District receiving approximately an additional $370,000 from the Utah Legislature for Necessary Existing Small Schools (NESS). The District will also receive an additional 2% on the Weighted Pupil Unit (WPU). The additional money does not come from locally assessed taxes; it comes from taxes collected by the State of Utah. This may sound like a large increase, but insurance costs will increase by 13.5%, which will be an estimated $120,000. The Utah Retirement System is also increasing their rate to 20.46%. The majority of the NESS money will be utilized to maintain current staffing in the District. I will be recommending to the School Board to hire one additional elementary teacher and one additional math teacher with the remaining funding. The School Board and I would like to welcome anyone that is interested to attend the budget meetings. I would also like to report to the local patrons that the District is fiscally sound at the end of FY13. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at the District office.
–Superintendent Ben Dalton