Sarasota News Leader

11/23/2012

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A LOOMING SHORTFALL Al Weidner, deputy chief financial officer for the Sarasota County Schools, addresses the School Board during the Nov. 16 workshop. Photo by Scott Proffitt UNLESS PROJECTIONS CHANGE OVER THE COMING MONTHS, THE SARASOTA COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD MAY HAVE TO CONSIDER NEW CUTS FOR ITS 2014 BUDGET By Scott Proffitt Staff Writer The budget for the Sarasota County Schools' 2014 fiscal year likely will have a shortfall, based on preliminary figures, Deputy Chief Financial Officer Al Weidner told the School Board members during their Nov. 20 work- shop at The Landings. As of Oct 31, the district's general fund budget for 2014 shows a projected increase in reve- nue of $4 million from the state and $3 million from property and other taxes, Weidner said. On the spending side, the budget allows for a $4.6 million decrease in salaries — a result of eliminating 10 positions because of the overall decrease in student population from previous years, Weidner added. However, he projected a $3.5 million increase in the cost of employee benefits, an $8 million increase in purchased services and several other less significant increases in spending, resulting in an anticipated $8 million rise in appropriations. Unless other revenue sources become avail- able, Weidner indicated, the School Board may have to consider new ways to pare the district's expenses for the 2013-14 school year. The district's general fund for education has three basic sources of revenue, Weidner point-

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