Uncertainty surrounds CCSD's budget; district tries to minimize cuts to schools

LAS VEGAS - Uncertainty remains a factor as the Clark County School District tries to figure out how to cut tens of millions of dollars from their budget to balance the books.

The latest figure reported Monday was $70 million, but schools may not have to cut as much as they initially had planned.  However, by the time the cuts would take effect, the district says it will be more like $60 million that would need to be cut. 

It comes out of the $2.4 billion overall operating budget -- some of which would come directly from the schools.

The district says a clerical error may have over-stated the cuts schools would have to make.  While that can be seen as a sliver of good news, the budget situation is still pretty grim.

The entire situation is uncomfortable for parents.

"I want her to have a good education, and if that's going to affect her education, I definitely don't want that to happen," said Stephanie Augustin, a concerned parent.

"I've been hearing about it, and it's so sad that it's happening," said Angel Ochoa, a concerned parent.

Clark County School District Administrators are grappling with a significant budget hole.  Parents like Ochoa say they're worried the extracurricular programs will be the first to go.

"I have a daughter in the band at the school right here, and a lot of the kids are the ones that are going to suffer from all of that," Ochoa said.

The district says it plans to cut from central services first. Trying to minimize the cuts principals must make in their first year of having control of their schools' budgets.

"I'm sure we're going to have lots of questions from our principals, and I hope they ask," said Kevin Child, CCSD Trustee.

Child has been very outspoken about the ups and downs of the budget process which has seen the budget hole grow significantly in the past month.

"It's going to affect schools of course," Child said. "Anytime you cut, it affects the bottom line which is our students."

Despite an increase in funding of $140 million this year, the district says the deficit is a result of those funds being largely locked up in specific programs mandated by the state, as well as unexpected payments such as a $27 million settlement with the administrators' union.

Trustees will consider the latest budget proposal next week.

In a statement sent to 8 News NOW, a school district representative said, "In school strategic budgets distributed Monday, it appears that many schools were charged too much for their portion of the increased costs, meaning they will be getting additional funding added back into their school strategic budgets as compared to what they received Monday."

The district hopes to have everything worked out by the end of the week.


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