Niagara schools deal with deficit in budget

NIAGARA, Wis. — Fewer open enrollment students and other factors have left the Niagara School District with a projected $237,000 deficit going into its proposed 2018-19 budget, school officials said.

The budget, which the school board tentatively approved Monday, includes general fund revenues of $5,178,617 and expenditures of $5,415,449.

The budget now goes on to the annual meeting set for 5:30 p.m. Oct. 22.

The district’s fund balance is expected to drop below $1 million to $788,361. In 2016-17, the fund balance was at $891,874. The 2017-18 budget had $5,007,951 in revenue and $5,226,412 in expenditures.

The district’s proposed levy amount would be $1,512.923, up from $1,388,089. No tax rate has yet been set but is expected at the annual meeting, Superintendent Nathaniel Burklund said.

Business Manager Shawna Lindow said they are still waiting for some state aid numbers and some revenue figures could shift.

Lindow also included a figures for the district’s Energy Efficiency Exemption, which is required when a district embarks on an energy efficiency program. The total project cost is $2,770,415, with 17 years remaining. It showed the district paid $165,881 toward the total in 2018, and energy savings of $63,847 was applied to the payment. The projected payment for 2019 is $172,975.

The administration has been working on a five-year plan that may help the district with planning for future budgets, Lindow and Burklund said.

In other business, the board;

— Approved an agreement to share Lindow as business manager with the Florence School District. The contract would be from November to June.

— Approved hiring Lianne Phillips as a part-time cook.