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State Makes Mid-Year Cuts to Schools

Mid-year budget cuts announced by Gov. Jerry Brown mean a loss of about $4.2 million for the Long Beach Unified School District, including $3.3 million in transportation funds.

The cuts could have been much worse.  The reductions were built into the budget that Brown and lawmakers approved in June, set to kick in if revenue did not reach the optimistic level they had assumed.  LBUSD could have lost as much as $24 million under the plan, but a surge in personal and corporate income tax receipts led the state to raise its cash-flow projections.  Because LBUSD lost $4.2 million rather than $24 million, it can absorb this reduction by using reserves so that no major cuts are needed for the remainder of this school year.

Brown, however, warned that more cuts are around the corner, in the proposed 2012-13 budget that he will present next month.  Likewise, LBUSD is likely to face additional cuts down the road if state funding for schools doesn’t improve.  The school district projects that its ending balance will dip well below zero in two years.  School districts are required by law to maintain a 2 percent reserve.