March 2, 2011
At the school board meeting last night, I presented my initial budget reduction recommendations to the board of education, which total approximately $3.5 million dollars. I have attached a copy of this listing. While it is difficult to estimate how the final state budget will affect us here in Lucia Mar, we are using the estimates from our County Office of Education and School Services of California to predict cuts of about $335 per student, which totals the $3.5 million. California Education Code requires us to give preliminary notice to certificated staff by March 15th of any potential layoff. The board is holding a special meeting next Tuesday, March 8, 2011 to address the formal steps necessary for preliminary notices to any affected certificated and classified staffs. I am very sorry that this course of action is necessary, and only hope the budget situation brightens. Governor Brown has set a deadline of March 10, 2011 for the legislature to vote to approve the ballot measure that would extend the temporary income, sales, and car taxes, which are due to expire, for five more years. His deadline is 89 days from June 7, the date on which he said he would like to have a special tax election. So far, he does not appear to have the few Republican votes he needs to place the measure on the ballot, but this could change any day. In the meantime, we have prepared a budget that is prudent and which assumes that the ballot measure is not enacted. While this is not the worst case scenario, it is one that is reasonable at this time. Frankly, we will not have a real handle on next year's budget for at least another few months. Please know that when the final budget is enacted, possibly in June, we hope conditions will be much better for us, but realistically, it could also be much worse. Thanks for your patience during this difficult budget process.