Even with a larger increase in expenditures than in revenues from the previous year, Hinsdale-Clarendon Hills Elementary District 181 is anticipating a balanced budget for 2013-14.
The District 181 Board approved the spending plan Sept. 23, which shows $80,822 more in expected revenues than for expenditures.
The $66.5 million in anticipated expenditures for 2013-14 is up about 7 percent from the 2012-13 actual expenditures of $62.2 million. And the $66.6 million in expected revenues is 3 percent more than the actual expenditures of $64.65 million for 2012-13.
About 91 percent of the district’s revenues are funded by property taxes. The remaining funds come from state aid, 4 percent; other local fees and taxes, 3 percent; and federal aid, 2 percent.
The district’s expenses are divided mainly among salaries, 68 percent; employee benefits, 16 percent; purchase services, 8 percent; supplies and materials, 6 percent; capital outlay, 2 percent; and other objects, 1 percent.
Salaries have increased 4.78 percent, or $1.8 million. Benefits are projected for an increase of 4.9 percent, or $400,000. Capital outlay has increased by $250,000 by providing standard classroom equipment across the district’s nine school buildings at a cost of $100,000; furniture replacement in the Media Resource Centers for $75,000, and building safety improvements for $75,000.
The budget includes a $300,000 contingency, something about which board members discussed the need before approving.
“There are several unknowns that can occur during the year,” said Gary Frisch, assistant superintendent for business and operations. “The contingency is like a rainy day fund, but the board needs to approve any expenditures from the contingency before anything is actually spent.”
Frisch said assumptions used in preparing the 2013-14 budget were a “best estimate,” using the most recent available data.
“School finance is conducted in a dynamic environment rather than in a vacuum,” he said. “Financial planning and management are affected by internal and external events.”
Some of the “events” that could create variables include a future state budget deficit, interest rates, enrollment decline and the number of personnel needed to accommodate the students, medical insurance costs and property tax variables.