Brainerd School Boar Finance Commitee approves second budget revision

/ 8 May 2012 / jennifer

Jessi Pierce, Brainerd Dispatch,  May 8, 2012 –

“History is the best way to tell the future,” director of business services, Steve Lund, said to the Brainerd School Board Finance Committee Tuesday afternoon. “And right now our (history) as it pertains to the budget serves a great future.”

Lund presented the second revision for the 2011-12 budget, applying changes to the first revision which was passed by the school board during its Feb. 13 meeting.

The first revision showed a change in the preliminary budget’s deficit, going from $1.2 million to a $356,201 deficit.

Lund said the first revision focused mainly on staffing and assignments along with enrollment. Still taking those into consideration, he added that, “as we now look to the second revision of our budget, we concentrate on reviewing the tracking our revenue and expenses toward the annual budgeted amounts.

“Based on how revenue and expense items are tracking, we will propose adjustments to specific categories within this second revision.”

Lund continued on to say that now, as both these revenue and expenses track throughout the year, progressing to year-end, they continue to become clearer and more definite.

“Based on this review,” said Lund, “the second revision of our budget shows a slight deterioration in our overall net results for the year by approximately $36,000.”

Fiscal year 2012 April budget revision changes showed the beginning revenue at $68,517,671, with $100,000 special education aid and excess cost, $101,000 in erate additions and $106,981 added in title funding allocation. Lund also sad that $40,000 was deducted from third party billing, putting the ending revenue under this revision at $68,785,652.

Changes were also seen on the expense side, with a beginning expense at $68,873,872. Lund attributed the unseasonably warm winter to the $200,000 saved in heating expenses and $100,000 saved in snow removal. He reported $300,000 was used for the wireless project, $225,00 for retirement benefits, $50,000 for teacher substitutes and $29,000 for miscellaneous charges, bringing the ending expense to $69,177,872 and the new resulting deficit to $392,220.

The finance committee unanimously approved the changes and will recommend approval of the second budget revisions at the Brainerd School Board meeting May 14.

Also during Tuesday’s committee meetin g, Lund and the Administrative and Employee Benefits Committee recommended a 6 percent increase in health insurance premiums for 2012.

Lund said the increase is based on the assumption of annual claims and costs increasing by 8 percent for 2013.

“The total cost of a 6 percent increase is approximately $555,000, with the district contribution increasing approximately $475,000 and employee contributions representing $80,000 of the $555,000,”said Lund. “The impact exclusively to the general fund is approximately $450,000 and this is the figure we will begin incorporating into our fiscal year for school year 2012-13 budget planning.”

Committee member Tom Haglin said, “It’s great that it’s only going up 6 percent, but it’s unfortunate it’s going up, but really a single digit increase is really good.”

The committee unanimously approved the recommendation.

JESSI PIERCE may be reached at 855-5859 or Follow her on Twitter at (@jessi_pierce).