Norwin braces for reduction in state educational subsidy

| Tuesday, Feb. 15, 2011

Norwin officials are preparing for the likelihood that they'll receive less state funding for their 2011-12 budget.

Business Manager John Wilson last night outlined some of the moving parts in the district's upcoming budget discussions as officials deal with the expected end of stimulus funding for education and the possibility of a cut in the state's basic education subsidy.

The state's new governor, Tom Corbett, has been directing his budget secretary to shift some existing appropriations in the 2010-11 budget into a reserve fund to stem a projected shortfall and is reviewing a 2011-12 spending plan that projects a $4 billion deficit.

Corbett has had his budget secretary use money received last year from a federal Education Jobs Fund to offset a recent reduction in the state's basic education funding appropriation. Corbett will address education funding as part of his budget plan next month.

The Pennsylvania Association of School Business Officials is warning its members that using the Education Jobs Fund now means there might not be any federal funding to ease the end of stimulus funds in the next budget cycle.

Wilson said the district's revenue projections for 2010-11 are in "good shape," but officials sent out a memo yesterday urging employees to cut off "nonessential spending" and administrators are trying to increase their reserve fund as much as possible.

"We got a lot of work," school Director Don Rhodes said.

Board members decided last month not to raise property taxes higher than the 1.2-mill cap imposed by the state for the 2011-12 budget under conditions of Act 1, the Taxpayer Relief Act.

The board voted last year to raise property taxes by 1.85 mills for 2010-11.

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