Earlier in January, California Governor Jerry Brown released his state budget proposal for the 2012-13 fiscal year. The proposal, and its impact on Madera Unified, was reviewed for the board Tuesday night by Kelly Porterfield, the district’s associate superintendent for business and operations.
Porterfield explained to the board that the governor’s proposal does make progress toward closing the state’s deficit, but the result is education being adversely impacted. A crucial component of Brown’s proposal are state tax initiatives that, if approved by California voters, would fund K-12 education.
The tax initiatives pose two problems for state school districts: (1) The passage of these initiatives cannot be counted upon from a budget-planning perspective; and (2) If the tax measure does appear on a voting ballot, it won’t be until November – eight months after school districts must issue layoff notices, and over four months after the beginning of the fiscal year.
As a result, education funding is very much in limbo, and school district must plan for a worst-case scenario. For MUSD, this scenario would result in a reduction of $370 per student, or approximately $7 million for next year.
Other highlights (or lowlights) from the governor’s budget proposal:
· The state is no longer funding home-to-school transportation or special education transportation. Districts may continue to provide transportation to students, but the encumbrance upon the general fund will increase.
· A state fiscal recovery is still not close to taking hold.
· The governor will revise his state budget proposal on May 14. It’s possible the proposal will differ significantly from what he just released in early January.
· MUSD will open negotiations with its collective bargaining units immediately to begin discussions with regard to mitigating any potential reductions.
As the district and community progress through the budget formation cycle, more information will be continually added to this page. If you have a question or would like to offer input, please click here to send MUSD an e-mail.