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District Budget Reality Check Anticipates Significant Reduction in State Funding
Posted by: Andrea Fox Published: 2/24/17

Governor’s Budget Proposal Indicates $900,000 Less for South Pasadena Unified in 2017-2018

SOUTH PASADENA, Calif. (February 21, 2017) – During the February 14, 2017 Board of Education meeting, South Pasadena Unified School District administrators shared a budget reality check based on Governor Jerry Brown’s state budget proposal for the 2017-2018 fiscal year. The Governor’s recent proposal indicates that SPUSD will be strapped with an additional $900,000 budget reduction. This amount is on top of the prior $400,000 budget reduction previously anticipated for the upcoming fiscal year. While plans to manage the reduction are in place, adjusting to so much less funding will be a key endeavor in the coming months.

     “The Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) places SPUSD in the bottom 10% of funding statewide. Since SPUSD has lower percentages of foster youth, low income families and English learners, we receive less funding through the State’s LCFF plan,” said Assistant Superintendent of Business Services, Dave Lubs. “We also expect to be responsible for a considerable increase in expenditures related to CalPERS and CalSTRS contributions, among other items. In order to fill the gaps, we need to very thoughtfully and carefully plan the District’s future actions.”

     Over the coming months, a key area of focus for the Board of Education will be financial strength and sustainability. Local funding sources such as the parcel tax, PTAs, Booster Clubs, and the South Pasadena Educational Foundation remain critical to supporting the District’s mission.  In addition, Measure SP, which was overwhelmingly passed in November 2016, will provide some relief to the operating budget by supporting facility projects such as replacing outdated roofs and HVAC systems. New systems will help reduce energy consumption, which leads to lower utility costs that will free-up dollars to support student programs.

     “Creative problem solving and finding budget efficiencies will be at the forefront of all planning,” said Lubs. “Considerable attention needs to be placed on making our dollars stretch for the District to remain solvent in the future.”

     The Governor has reduced anticipated revenue to districts like South Pasadena for the next several years. By June 2017, administrators, staff and the school board will hammer out a balanced budget for 2017-2018 that addresses this decline. To advocate for districts in similar situations, the South Pasadena Board of Education will be gathering “like-funded” districts together to establish a stronger collective common voice at the State level.

     Mr. Lubs’ budget presentation, shared during the board meeting on February 14, may be accessed through the SPUSD website under Business Services or through this link http://spusd.net/budgetupdate.

About South Pasadena Unified School District

Established in 1886, the South Pasadena Unified School District (SPUSD) serves approximately 4,800 students within five schools including three elementary schools, one middle school and one comprehensive high school in South Pasadena, California.  Nestled in the West San Gabriel Valley, SPUSD has earned a reputation for providing high quality public education, attracting families who value challenging academic programs and outstanding teachers. Consistently recognized for superior performance, SPUSD students earn honors at the local, state and national level.  The District draws vital support from parents and community members through the South Pasadena Educational Foundation, local PTAs and booster clubs.

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For more information, contact: South Pasadena Unified School District, Office of the Superintendent, scarroll@spusd.net