The five-year financial forecast for the Hillsboro City Schools looks even better than it did six months ago, according to figures presented this week by treasurer Adam Zink.
Zink said the forecast, which Ohio school districts are required to provide to the state every six months, is really “just a guesstimate” and could change at any time depending on state funding.
But he said this week’s projections were up from October’s because the school district received $757,000 more in state funding than was anticipated for 2016, property taxes receipts were up, and income tax receipts were up slightly.
The figures Zink provided this week forecast Hillsboro with a general fund balance of $6.26 million at the end of fiscal year 2016, $6.44 million at the end of fiscal year 2017, $6.64 million in 2018, $7.09 million in 2019, and $7.26 million in 2020.
In October, those figures were $5.91 million in 2016, $6.12 million in 2017, $6.38 million in 2018, $6.45 million in 2019 and $6.75 million in 2020.
The Hillsboro City Schools underspent during the past year by $621,000 from what was previously forecast, Zink said. He also said the current forecast numbers could come down a bit because the school board approved the purchase of $223,000 in textbooks this week.
He said some of the reasons the school district spent less money than was forecasted were because the staff cut back on supplies, less than the normal amount of repairs were needed, and the amount the district spent on salaries came down because it didn’t have to hire as many substitutes. Zink also said both fuel consumption and the price of diesel fuel were down.
He said the reason for the reduction in fuel consumption was likely because the bus fleet in being well maintained and because the district is using newer vehicles.
“We’re not running 20-year-old buses, which would help with mileage,” Zink said.
“It’s largely due to good work on the part of the staff,” Zink added. “They’re doing a good job of being responsible with what they need and not asking for what they want.”
Board member Bill Myers said at this week’s school board meeting that it’s nice too see the district with a positive cash flow.
“To offer everything we offer that a lot of other local school districts don’t offer and still be able to run without going into deficit spending is really encouraging,” Myers said.
Reach Jeff Gilliland at 937-402-2522 or on Twitter @13gillilandj.
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