School Board gets budget update

By Chuck Kajer

The New Prague Area School Board discussed the 2005-06 budget during its meeting Tuesday, March 29.

Rod Zivkovich, the district’s new Director of Finance, presented the various district-wide aspects of the budget, assisted by Food Services Director Bob Foix, Community Services Director Steve Bruchman and Superintendent Dr. Frankie Poplau.

Zivkovich said the district’s $23.6 million budget for net year. That is $1.3 in additional revenue from the current year, due to increasing enrollment.

Zivkovich and Poplau pointed out the special education costs per pupil are down for next year. Poplau said this is due to changes in efficiencies in the program being made by new Special Services Director Darren Kermes, who joined the district last summer.

They also went over the basic numbers for building allocations and the projected fund balance through the 2009-10 school year. Fund balances for the district will increase slightly next year, then go down as the district opens two new schools in 2006-07. The district anticipates a negative fund balance in 2007-08, when the levy approved in 2003 expires.

Foix presented his food service budget for the coming year. He is projecting total revenues of $1.19 million, up from $1.07 million in 2004-05, and expenses of $1.15 million, up from $1.05 million. The budgeted amount includes a planned increase of 10 cents per student lunch, to $1.95 for secondary students and $1.85 for elementary students. Foix showed the rates charged by 10 similar school districts, and the New Prague figures were right in the middle of the range for those schools.

Bruchman presented the Community Services budget, which included four components. Community Education, Early Childhood Family Education, School Readiness and Unreserved. Bruchman anticipates additional expenses in several areas, including Early Childhood Screening, where state requirements may be changing, requiring the district to screen students at a younger age.

Bruchman said Community Education will have a fund balance to offset deficits in several of the categories, with growth in registration and fees for community education classes covering these deficits.

Zivkovich said the district’s debt service budget will increase, due to the bond referendum that passed in December, and also went over the Capital purchase budget.

At the next meeting, administrators will go over the budget allocations for each of the buildings.

Board compensation

The board discussed its own compensation. It has been eight years since there has been an increase in the board’s compensation. Figures were discussed showing how other districts pay their board members.

What we’re seeing is that the numbers are all over the map

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