Mancos District school board approves deficit spending

Schools short $133,000 after state cut

The Mancos District Re-6 School Board approved a budget with $133,000 of deficit spending Monday after the state cut the district's funding by $150 per student.

The cuts came in mid-December when the state decided not to make up the difference left by declining property tax revenue.

"It was kind of a shock when they said we're cutting the (per pupil revenue)," said Superintendent Brian Hanson.

Twenty-seven other districts suffered similar cuts. This is the fifth straight year the state has reduced funding to the district.

General fund reserve dollars will cover the shortfall, and Hanson said the deficit spending may be lower than projected when final numbers are tallied in June.

The district also made $40,000 in cuts that reduced spending on professional growth, purchase service items and other expenses before January's board meeting to bring the deficit down to $133,000.

The administration is hoping the Statehouse approves a supplemental budget presented by the Colorado Department of Education, which would bring the school $31,000.

The board had approved spending on the preschool knowing that it would not break even in its first year. Those expenses contributed $62,000 to the shortfall.

"It takes awhile for it grow to get enough students to make it a self-sustaining school," Hanson said.

Hanson encouraged people to write representatives about the cuts.

Colorado ranks 43rd for per-student funding, according to the Colorado School Finance Project.