Thursday, December 16, 2010

No Tax Hike In Pittsburgh School Budget

The Pittsburgh School Board has approved a 2011 operating budget of $540.9 million. That's 2.95% or $15.5 million more that this year's spending plan. For a 10th straight year, there will be no tax hike in the Pittsburgh School District.

Deputy Superintendent Linda Lane will administer the 2011 budget when she becomes superintendent January 1.....

“We have continued to make the difficult decision necessary to increase student achievement while reducing costs without raising taxes on City residents. We will also reach out to our leaders in Harrisburg to inform them about our progress here in Pittsburgh and the importance of state education funding to our continued success.”

Lane says major areas of increased spending are medical costs, up $3 million; salaries, up $3.7 million; special education, up $2.7 million; and transportation, up $2 million.

To balance the 2011 spending plan, the district will have to use about $8.7 million from its reserve funds.

Lane says they anticipate financial challenges because Federal Stimulus Funds, used by the state to meet the needs of school districts, will dry up in 2011, and at the same time employee benefits and charter school payments are increasing while the District’s local revenues remain flat.

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