Last (Monday) night, the Eugene 4J budget committee presented projections for next year. Although the situation has improved, the school district will have to make compromises.
The overall reaction to the early school budget forecast has been positive. Eugene 4J spokesperson Kerry Delf:
"We are looking forward to a year next year that is much less of a financial challenge than this year and some past years have been."
While the financials look better for next year, there is still a projected shortage of more than 4 million dollars. The school district will get more money from the state and will save an estimated half million dollars by withdrawing from Lane ESD. Offsetting that, the projection includes a bigger budget for reducing class sizes and adding school days, which the district has said are priorities.
Delf: "We don't have final answers about some pieces of our financial forecast, and our sense of that will be improving over the course of this spring."
Delf says negotiations with employee unions will also be important. The next budget committee meeting is scheduled for April.