PUSD awaiting election results to learn about funding | November 2, 2012 | Pleasanton Weekly | PleasantonWeekly.com |


Pleasanton Weekly

News - November 2, 2012

PUSD awaiting election results to learn about funding

Two competing ballot measures could mean future cash or future cuts

by Glenn Wohltmann

The Pleasanton school district is ready for the potential loss of $7 million in state funding should both funding proposals on next week's ballot fail.

Both Gov. Jerry Brown's Proposition 30 and a competing measure, Prop 38, known as "Our Children, Our Future," proposed by Molly Munger, would boost state funding to schools.

The district already slashed its budget by the $7 million it would lose if Brown's proposal fails, Luz Cazares, assistant superintendent of business services, told the school board it its last meeting.

"We are prepared for that," Cazares said.

While the district is prepared for this year, Board President Joan Laursen said the loss of that money would be ongoing. She said the same $7 million would have to be cut from the district's budget every year in the future, like the cuts that the district has already seen.

"We'd have to have a plan for next year," Laursen said.

It could also mean some short-term borrowing for the district as payments from the state are shifted again from the end of one fiscal year, in June, to the next fiscal year, which begins in July.

Prop 38 would provide extra revenues for the district in the 2013-14 school year, leaving school districts across the state to struggle through another lean year before they get the new funds.

Should both Prop 30 and Prop 38 pass, the measure with the largest number of votes would win, and school board members have been urging voters to opt for both measures in the hope that one will gain the simple majority needed to pass.

Cazares said the district also could lose about 8.2% of its federal funding, largely earmarked for special education.

That comes to about $288,000 a year, although Cazares said districts across the country have been told to plan on getting the funding reauthorized by Congress.

School district officials will learn more about the state funding situation next month.

By the next board meeting, on Nov. 13, the ballot measures will have either passed or failed; the district is also awaiting a report from the state Legislative Analysts Office about revenue projections, which is expected in the middle of November.