Osseo Area Schools budget outlook improves slightly

The cuts Osseo Area Schools expects to make during the next two years have been reduced to $11 million. The reduction amount is down $3 million from previous estimate due to recent changes in two financial projections.

The December 2012 enrollment analysis, on which revenue projections are based, confirmed that the district’s enrollment decline is slowing and actual enrollment is higher than projected. This results in about $1 million more revenue over the next two years than previously estimated.

In addition, the fiscal year 2012 audit completed in November confirmed the success of “aggressive cost containment strategies” applied last year. Continuing similar strategies should reduce previously estimated expenditures by about $2 million over the next two years.

In December, the school board directed administration to prepare four levels of reduction to provide flexibility in decision making:

• Level 1 — $3.1 million for the 2013-14 school year.

• Levels 2 and 3 — $1 million each that may be taken in 2013-14 or 2014-15.

• Level 4 — $6.1 million for the 2014-15 school year.

The district will be seeking input from residents during the budget planning process.

Info: district 279.org.

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