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    AUSD Sup. to meet with public on budget

    It’s that time again: time to hammer out a school budget for the next academic year. Albany Superintendent of Schools Marla Stephenson will meet with the public Thursday evening, February 11 to present her proposal for next year’s school district budget.

    The event is from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the new City Council Chambers at San Pablo at Marin Avenues.

    Each January, the superintendent holds a budget summit to discuss how much money the state of California is expected to allot to education, and to Albany Unified School District in particular, for the following year and to unveil a tentative proposal for how Albany will operate within that sum plus the amount collected from local parcel taxes. For more detail visit http://ausd.ca.schoolloop.com.

    In California, unlike most other states, at least 90 percent of school funding comes from the state through its general fund revenues collected from income, property and sales taxes. The balance comes from local parcel taxes and federal money. In Albany, the parcel taxes passed and renewed last November are estimated to make up about 10 percent of the school district budget. In many other states, taxes for schools are collected locally and apportioned locally.

    Superintendent Stephenson in a memo said that on Thursday she would discuss the current AUSD priorities and options and how the Governor’s recently unveiled state budget would change district funding levels as well as possibly alter requirements. She’ll also discuss how Albany’s emergency parcel tax will augment our budget.

    For more information on California school finances, readers may visit EdSource, a non-profit education research firm, at:

    Speaking of the current budget season, EdSource states:
    “As school districts around California begin work on their 2010-11 budgets, they are facing a financial situation likely to be even more difficult than this year’s. Much of the one-time money that the state and federal government provided in response to the recent economic crisis will have run out.”

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