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School District 202 preliminary FY20 budget shows over $2 million surplus

6/25/2019, 6:59 p.m.
Plainfield – District 202 officials project the 2019-20 operating budget revenues will surpass expenses by up to $2.4 million should ...

Plainfield – District 202 officials project the 2019-20 operating budget revenues will surpass expenses by up to $2.4 million should the district receive anticipated tier-based state funding of up to $4.3 million.

The Plainfield District 202 Board of Education received the preliminary proposed 2019-20 budget at its June 24, 2019 regular meeting.

The Board will vote at its July 22, 2019 regular meeting to put the proposed budget on 30-day public display as required by law. The proposed budget and related information is posted on the front page of the District 202 website (www.psd202.org)

The Board plans to hold a public hearing on the proposed budget at 6:30 p.m. Monday, August 19, 2019 and vote on the new fiscal plan at its regular meeting that same night. The Board meeting will be held at the District 202 Administrative Center, 15732 Howard Street, Plainfield.

The proposed FY 2020 budget will allow District 202 to maintain high-quality educational programs while continuing to develop and implement a responsible, sustainable financial plan, said Rick Engstrom, assistant superintendent for business and operations.

Engstrom said the proposed fiscal plan also:

• keeps property taxes as low as possible

• is balanced

• maintains “Recognition” status (the highest possible ranking) on the State Board of Education’s Financial Profile.

District 202 earned “Watch” status in 2012 – the lowest state ranking – but reached the highest status, “Recognition” in 2016. It has enjoyed Recognition status ever since. District 202 scored a “3.9” out of a possible “4” in 2018, the most current year.

PROJECTED REVENUES AND EXPENSES

District 202’s total preliminary projected 2019-20 budget including debt service and capital projects is $327.7 million, up from $311.6 million last year, or 5.1 percent. Total revenues are expected to be $327.7 million in 2019-20, up from $313.6 last year, or 4.5 percent.

The preliminary proposed 2019-20 operating budget shows $287.2 million in anticipated revenues, up from $283.5 million last year.

The operating budget pays for all daily operating expenses including salaries and benefits, which comprise about 79 percent of the Operating Budget this year.

The preliminary proposed 2019-20 operating budget shows $287.7 million in expected expenses, up from $275.9 million last year. However, district officials expect to receive between $1,970,223 and $4.3 million in additional tier-based state funding later this year. The additional state revenue would yield an operating surplus of up to $2.4 million.

The State of Illinois considers the Education, Operations and Maintenance, Transportation, Working Cash, IMRF and Tort funds together as the “Operating Budget” to assess and rate school districts’ financial health.

KEY BUDGET POINTS

As usual, salaries and benefits comprise about 79 percent of the preliminary projected 2019-20 operating expenses. Salaries and benefits are expected to total about $227.5 million, which is up about 5.4 percent, or $11.7 million, over 2018-19 figure of $215.8.

The preliminary proposed figure includes:

• 3 percent raises for administration and non-union support staff;

• raises averaging 2.75 percent plus a .5 percent increase to their base pay for Association of Plainfield Teachers (APT) members will receive;

• raises averaging 4.5 percent for Plainfield Association of Support Staff (PASS) members per the new five-year contract approved in April 2019;

• 2 percent increases in benefit.

The preliminary proposed 2019-20 budget includes 30 new staff positions including 20 new social workers. School-level funding will not change, and departmental initiatives will be fully funded.

As well, the proposed fiscal plan includes $4.6 million for assorted capital projects and $2.8 million for additional technology initiatives and equipment.

The proposed tentative budget also includes a $1 million contingency for building-specific enrollment changes and special education needs, as has been done the last several years.

Finally, District 202 operates more efficiently than the state average in nearly every category:

• Instructional spending per student -- $6,044 versus the state average of $8,024

• Operational spending per student -- $9,895 versus the state average of $13,894

• Pupil to Elementary Teacher Ratio – 19 students to every teacher, the same as the state average

• Pupil to High School Teacher Ratio – 24 students to every teacher versus the state average of 19 students

• Administrator to Student Ratio – 192 students to every administrator versus the state average of 181