Superintendent Nicholas Bartlett and FMUSD Business Manager Dorene Mudrow, held a community meeting on Tuesday, April 28 to discuss a possibly devastating budget deficiency for the 2009/2010 school year.  The district will not know the full extent of the deficiency until two weeks before the budget is due, but are trying to be proactive in their actions.

The basic operations of the FMUSD require an operating budget of approximately $2.7 million.  The majority of funding for the school comes from local property tax and state aide.  Unfortunately, the school may see a $215,000 decrease in funding from taxes alone.  In addition a state mandated 5% deduction in base ($78,975) might be required. 

Along with various other income reductions, the district is facing a possible $362,193 budget reduction.  Add this devastating amount to growing expenses and the schools are looking at an approximate $440,000 budget deficiency.

The district has been working feverishly to find ways to cut expenses in preparation for the more than 6% deficiency.  Mudrow and Bartlett held two meetings, one in Moccasin and one in Fredonia, to inform the community about the pending situation.  They encouraged input from attendees and expressed their desire to involve community members, as much as possible, in the decision making for the cuts.

Friday, May 1, Fredonia residents received a survey requesting input about budget cuts.  It requested recipients rank the order of items they believe should be cut first.  Items included things like extracurricular, co-curricular and athletic activities.  It suggested closing the school in Moccasin, salary and benefit deductions and staffing changes.  It also proposed a property tax increase.  All items are simply possibilities and suggestions but need to be reviewed seriously. 

The district requests all surveys returned to the school as soon as possible to assist in decision-making.