CL Hawk Update
October 1, 2018
District Financial Health
Note: This CL Hawk Update was also used for the Oct/Nov Centrally Speaking article.
Central Lee Community, Parents, and Students,
Each year during the month of September, the district has an independent firm audit the district financial records. At the completion of this audit, the district submits a variety of financial reports certifying our records for the previous school year. We have just recently completed these actions and are ready to provide a financial update for the district. The first thing I would like to share is that the district is in one of the strongest financial conditions since the 1990s. The main indicator of financial health is the district’s spending authority. Spending authority is the amount of money the district can legally spend in one year. It is not the amount of cash the district has or the amount of revenue coming in. We tend to think of this as our “credit”. It has been used by the state as an indicator of school district financial health for many years. Our spending authority at the conclusion of FY18 (2017-2018) is $2,455,947. In FY06, the district had a spending authority of $360,386. The district has seen a steady increase for several years.
This past spring, open enrollment was questioned by some of our stakeholders during the bond vote. In the column below (Figure One), you can see in the misc. income row how open enrollment has provided a boost to our district over the years. In fact, this past year, we received more funding from open enrollment than from local property tax dollars (Figure Two). Open enrollment has provided a boost for the district over the past several years when state aid has been historically low. The district’s overall enrollment has been either stable or slightly increasing the past five years. This year’s enrollment is on the same trajectory with a slight increase.
The board and I have worked hard to invest in new curriculum resources, add staff, and maintain programming without jeopardizing our financial position for the future. We will continue to do so going forward. That does not mean we say “yes” to every request. We have been very focused on trying to put resources in areas that we feel help us meet the areas set forth in our strategic plan.
If you have any questions regarding school finances, please do not hesitate to ask.
Dr. Andy Crozier