The Governing Board of the Parker Unified School District has adopted changes to their budget for the 2018-19 fiscal year that will affect mostly salaries and supplies. At the board’s Dec. 11 meeting, Assistant Superintendent Brad Sale said these changes are necessary because they have fewer students than anticipated, and because the overvaluation of the county by the Assessor’s Office means they have less money from their budget override.
Sale said the Maintenance and Operations budget will need to be reduced by $93,791 to a total of $12,610,848.
Sale explained to the board the Arizona Department of Education allows for revisions during the course of a fiscal year as budgets are prepared before the start of a fiscal year and revenues and expenditures could be different from what was anticipated. He said the district has 21 fewer students in their average daily membership (ADM) than they had budgeted for, and that affects funding from the state.
The district currently has 1,211 students who qualify for the ADM counts in grades K-8, which is six fewer than anticipated. They have 531 students at Parker High School who qualify for ADM, which is 15 fewer than anticipated.
“That was a big negative,” Sale said.
While the school district does not have a primary property tax, they are having lower revenues through their secondary tax from the budget override. Sale reminded the board of how the County Assessor’s office had overvalued the county, and the district could not change its tax rate for the fiscal year because it had already been adopted.
Sale said the budget may need to be adjusted again near the end of the fiscal year.
On a more positive note, Sale said the district had spent 36 percent of the Maintenance & Operations budget even though they are 42 percent through the school year.
Sale said the district has received half of their Impact Aid payments for the fiscal year. Impact Aid is provided to school districts that are affected by non-taxable federal lands, such as parks, military bases, or Native American reservations. The district receives these funds due to the presence of the Colorado River Indian Reservation, and they are the reason the district has no primary property tax.