BEAVER TOWNSHIP- The South Range Local Board of Education will host an informational Fiscal State of the South Range Local School District meeting at 7 p.m. Nov. 28 in the high school Auditorium, 11300 Columbiana-Canfield Road. The meeting will feature Joel Roscoe, superintendent of Hillsdale Local Schools in Wayne County, in conjunction with the Buckeye Association of School Administrators (BASA), who will present an overview of school funding in Ohio. Members of the South Range school board, Superintendent Dennis Dunham and Treasurer/CFO Jim Phillips will present the fiscal state of the district following Roscoe's presentation.
According to Dunham the intent of the meeting will be to communicate the latest in school funding at the state and local levels. Attendees will have the opportunity to ask questions and share comments to the presenters.
"We're doing this for awareness, to try to provide as many details as we can," Dunham said. "We're going to discuss resolutions to the (fiscal) issue and seek community feedback."
Treasurer Jim Phillips is encouraging all residents to attend the meeting.
"It's an important meeting because it's...bad news," he said. "[Districts] are having trouble across the state. We've been able to fight [the deficit] off, but not for much longer."
According to Phillips' most recent five-year forecast, the district is predicted to be operating in a deficit of $884,600 by July 2014 and $2.7 million the following year. The district will have a $799,945 carryover at the end of this year, according to the forecast.
Phillips said the forecast two years ago predicted a deficit by now, but financial maneuvers including staff cuts and the shale gas bonus has delayed it. He said that although expenditures continue to increase, revenue from the state and property taxes does not, causing the deficit.
Kevin Howell can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org