More Budget Restrictions Imposed

February 14, 2003
Due to increasing concerns about the economic outlook, Superintendent Jerry D. Weast has expanded restrictions on expenditures in the current fiscal year. Previous expenditure restrictions implemented since October 1, 2002, have resulted in a projected offset of more than $5 million in reductions, but the continuing weak economic situation and the risk of other unavoidable commitments later this year make it necessary to impose further expenditure restrictions.

As a result of these economic and fiscal forecasts, Dr. Weast took steps to reduce both short-term and long-term fiscal commitments. In a directive to principals this week [February 10], Chief Operating Officer Larry A. Bowers outlined the restrictions that will be in effect for the remainder of the school year.

School specific

* Summer Supplemental Employment (SSE) - The SSE employment authorized for the remainder of the year are days allocated to positions that are guaranteed SSE and days allocated to individual teachers, but not yet worked.

* Extracurricular activities - Local school Class 1 activities (stipend-supported clubs and activities that are not fixed-stipend activities designated by negotiated contract) will be terminated as of Friday, April 11. This action at the elementary level will mean ceasing activity buses April 11.

* Training activities - These activities will be continued at this time. All local school grants for staff training are exempt from the freeze.

* Part-time, temporary employment - Temporary employment is frozen. Temporary part-time allocations for elementary secretarial and high school guidance support will be closed down as of April 17.

* Overtime - The only overtime authorized is weekend use of buildings, which is paid by the ICB, and emergency overtime for maintenance. Overtime for building service employees due to emergencies may be authorized. Any exceptions must be authorized prior to the activity and will require justification.

Materials and supplies

Textbook accounts are frozen. Textbooks needed this school year can be requested through the Office of School Performance. School supplies and materials accounts are not frozen.


* Consultant funds that have not been committed are frozen. Consultants currently hired through local school grants for staff training are exempt from the freeze. Consultants will be used for training activities only if a contract already has been signed.

* The repair of instructional equipment through accounts in the K-12 budget will be continued, but only on an as-needed basis. Instrumental music repairs will be made on an emergency basis.

* Funds for the disposal of chemical wastes are exempt.

* Contractual funds for paramedics at sports activities and interpreters for the hearing impaired are exempt.

Other expenditures

* Staff will continue to be reimbursed for mileage. Other expenditures on monthly expense reports will not be paid unless previously approved by the community superintendent.

* Out-of-state travel funds are frozen. Travel to conferences for speakers or presentations or for grant-funded activities is exempt from the freeze.

* Dues, registrations and subscriptions are frozen.

* Outdoor education expenditures are exempt from the freeze.

* Requests for school reimbursements for any items that are frozen elsewhere in the memorandum will not be paid.

Position exceptions

All positions continue to be frozen, with the following exceptions:

* All school-based professional positions (teachers and administrators) will be filled with temporary personnel.

* Bus attendants will be filled with temporary personnel.

* School secretaries (except the principal's secretary), financial assistant, and registrar will be filled with temporary personnel.

* Schools with only one security staff member will be filled with temporary personnel.

* Elementary building service workers will be filled with temporary personnel.

* Special education instructional assistants will be filled with temporary personnel.

Open positions

The following positions will remain open for hiring for the remainder of the school year:

* Special education (including speech therapists)
* English as a Second Language
* Physics and chemistry
* Spanish
* Administrative school secretary (principal's secretary only)
* Elementary school building service managers
* Elementary school building service work leader
* Bus operators

Hiring for computer science, reading specialist, or media specialist positions will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Teacher vacancies will be filled with long-term substitutes.

Additional restrictions

Non-position expenditures previously approved as part of expenditure plans are frozen effective immediately. Each office is reviewing its approved expenditure plan and identifying any critical expenditures that have not yet been made. Exceptions would be only for absolutely necessary expenditures, without which required work products would be impossible. These restrictions cover both grants and tax-supported expenditures.

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