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District 202 preliminary FY22 operating budget: revenues top expenses by $4.7 million

6/29/2021, 10:39 p.m.
Submitted report Plainfield – District 202 officials project the 2021-22 operating budget revenues will surpass expenses by up to $4.7 ...

Submitted report

Plainfield – District 202 officials project the 2021-22 operating budget revenues will surpass expenses by up to $4.7 million, based on preliminary budget data presented at the June 28, 2021 Board of Education regular meeting.

The Board will hold a public hearing on the proposed budget at 6:30 p.m. Monday, August 16, 2021, and vote on the new fiscal plan at its regular meeting that same night. The Board meeting will be held at the District 202 Administrative Center, 15732 Howard Street, Plainfield.

The proposed FY 2022 budget will allow District 202 to maintain high-quality educational programs while continuing to develop and implement a responsible, sustainable financial plan, said Anthony Arbogast, assistant superintendent for business and operations.

Arbogast said the proposed fiscal plan also:

• keeps property taxes as low as possible

• is balanced

• maintains “Recognition” status (the highest possible ranking) on the State Board of Education’s Financial Profile.

District 202 earned “Watch” status in 2012 – the lowest state ranking – but reached the highest status, “Recognition” in 2016. It has enjoyed Recognition status ever since. District 202 scored a “3.9” out of a possible “4” in 2020, the most current year.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION IS POSTED ON THE FRONT PAGE OF THE DISTRICT 202 WEBSITE

PROJECTED REVENUES AND EXPENSES

District 202’s total preliminary projected 2021-22 budget including debt service and capital projects is $354 million, down from $365.5 million last year, or 3.1 percent. Last year’s number included about $23 million for the construction of the new Wallin Oaks Elementary School.

Total revenues are expected to be $352.8 million in 2021-22, up from $334.3 million last year, or 5.5 percent.

PROPOSED OPERATING BUDGET REVENUES AND EXPENSES

The preliminary proposed 2021-22 operating budget shows $319.3 million in anticipated revenues, up from $293.3 million last year.

The operating budget pays for all daily operating expenses including salaries and benefits, which comprise about 79 percent of the Operating Budget this year.

This includes hiring 47 new certified staff, including staff for full-day kindergarten, Wallin Oaks Elementary School and as part of the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSERS) grants.

The preliminary proposed 2021-22 operating budget shows $314.6 million in expected expenses, up from $298.8 million last year, up 5.3 percent from last year.

The State of Illinois considers the Education, Operations and Maintenance, Transportation, Working Cash, IMRF and Tort funds together as the “Operating Budget” to assess and rate school districts’ financial health.

KEY BUDGET POINTS

As usual, salaries and benefits comprise about 79 percent of the preliminary projected 2021-22 operating expenses.

Salaries and benefits are expected to total about $249.9 million, which is up about 6 percent, or $14.1 million, over last year’s $235.8 million. Again, that includes salaries for 47 new certified staff.

The preliminary proposed figure includes:

• 3 percent raises for administration and non-union support staff;

• Raises for both Association of Plainfield Teachers (APT) and Plainfield Association of Support Staff (PASS) members are budgeted per their respective contracts;

• 3 percent increases in benefit.

As well, school allocations remain flat and departments are funded to support department initiatives that were previously planned, otherwise remaining flat.

The proposed fiscal plan includes $4.1 million for assorted capital projects and a $1 million contingency for building-specific enrollment changes and special education needs, as has been done the last several years.

Finally, District 202 operates more efficiently than the state average in nearly every category, per the 202 state report card:

• Instructional spending per student -- $7,122 versus the state average of $8,582

• Operational spending per student -- $11,436 versus the state average of $14,492

• Pupil to Elementary Teacher Ratio – 19:1 students to every teacher, versus the state average of 18:1

• Pupil to High School Teacher Ratio – 23:1 students to every teacher versus the state average of 19:1 students

• Administrator to Student Ratio – 186 students to every administrator versus the state average of 171 for every administrator