1. Maintain & improve educational excellence while living within financial means
- 63% of voters supported the 2011 referendum, choosing additional funding for the District over program cuts that would impact students.
- The Board targeted at least 5 years until next referendum – a goal now achieved and surpassed;
2. Budget conservatively, to account for state funding limitations
- Uncertainty in Springfield is an ongoing budgetary challenge (i.e., pension cost shift, property tax freeze)
- Current concerns include new Senate Bill 851, which proposes a 2-year property tax freeze in 2018 and 2019, and some pension costs likely to be shifted to the District
- D39’s careful contingency planning and dynamic financial management resulted in (1) higher fund balances, (2) the ability to fund board-developed targeted outcomes that benefit children, and (3) revised (improved) assumptions for financial projections.
- Examples of board-developed, targeted outcomes that benefit children include:
- WJHS science wing
- Renovated libraries in 5 of 6 buildings
- 1:1 Mobile Learning program
- Expanded foreign language offerings
- Early Childhood addition to house entire program at Romona
- Roof & boiler replacements (some were 59 years old)
3. Maintain a fund balance target of no lower than 30% of total operating expenditures
- A 30% fund balance means that D39 has approximately 3 months working capital.
- Fund balance targets in other NT Township districts are greater than 50%.
- Fund balances below 25% result in ISBE financial watch list, and lowered bond ratings.
4. Connect expenses to revenues for enhanced financial stability
- Since the referendum, salaries of all employees are tied to CPI.