Del Mar school board OKs $48M budget for 2015-16


The Del Mar Union School District approved a balanced budget for the 2015-16 school year, with a projected $48 million in revenues and $48 million in expenditures.

The balanced budget comes after the district went through a tough few years, according to Cathy Birks, assistant superintendent of business services. In 2011-12 and 2012-13, the district deficit-spent by $2.4 million and $2.5 million, respectively. In 2014-15, it will deficit- spend by $123,000.

Birks said the district was prepared to deficit-spend by $1 million again this year because of the modernization of Carmel Del Mar, but they saw an increase in funding from the state which allowed them to have a balanced budget.

Slight variances in the budget revenues are because of an increase in the one-time unrestricted state Average Daily Attendance funding, from $180 to $530 per student, and an increase in Education Protection Act funds, a total of $858,000. EPA funding expires in the 2018-19 school year.

Birks said the district would continue to “spend thoughtfully” and build reserves as board members look ahead to losing that state funding.

The budget also reflects an increase in certificated salaries and benefits as a result of the collective bargaining agreement approved in May. Additional staffing was also required for the 2015-16 school year, including a special education resource specialist and special education aides as a result of the individualized education program process.

The district will have an ending fund balance of $11.3 million, which includes the mandated 15 percent level of reserve funding for economic uncertainties, $1.6 million assigned for pensions and benefit increases, $1 million for school site modernization and $7.2 million in unassigned monies.