The Ohio School Boards Association sent a notice to its members today which included this comment:
Today, the state Office of Budget and Management (OBM) released district-by-district spreadsheets simulating the dollars generated under the governor’s school-funding proposal. Please note that the fiscal year (FY) 2013 base excludes funding for transportation as calculated for FY 2011 and the career technical education attributed funds.
I won't claim to understand exactly what that means, but the spreadsheet the OBM sent suggests that Hilliard City Schools is in line to receive $5 million more in funding in FY14 than we received in FY13.
The first thing to say about this is: I DON'T BELIEVE IT
I'd like to believe it. An extra $5 million/yr of funding from the State changes things. If our State funding were to be $5 million/yr more for the next several years, and we were to hold spending to that projected in the Oct 2012 Five Year Forecast, then this could delay the next levy for a year, perhaps to 2015 instead of 2014.
But remember, there are several 'knobs' we can play with. Changing the levy timing is just one of them.
We could still put a levy on the ballot in 2014, but make it much smaller - say 4.4 mills instead of the 7.7 mills I estimated in October.
We could be more generous than we could have otherwise been in the next union negotiations, which will take place later this year.
Or we could plan for some combination of these factors.
More discussion than this is premature at this point, as this $5 million is just a number in the wind right now. The General Assembly still has to consider this proposal, and experience tells us that there will be additional tweaks. I'm not particularly optimistic that increased funding to districts like ours - seen to be among the more affluent in the State - is going to make it through the legislative cycle. The power in the General Assembly belongs to the urban and rural districts, not the suburbs.
Stand by for further developments.