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Schools Delay Cuts in Budget


Glendale Board of Education members agreed Tuesday to delay until October cutting $500,000 from their $103.5-million budget for 1990-91, saying they were hopeful that state funds for schools would be restored and district reserves would be higher than anticipated.

District officials learned last week that because of Gov. George Deukmejian's vetoes of state education funding and rising health-care costs, $3.8 million in cuts or reductions in spending for Glendale schools may be required during the next two years.

But Supt. Robert Sanchis told board members Tuesday that it would be premature to make cuts now because officials are uncertain about three key factors: how much money will be left over from the 1989-90 school year, how many students will enroll in 1991-92 and whether the state will restore Deukmejian's cuts.

Any change in those areas could mean more--or less--money for the district, Sanchis said. For instance, the district projected student enrollment would grow by almost 4%, or about 890 students, this year. Each additional student who enrolls is worth $3,000 in state funding, he said.

Sanchis and others will be more certain about those factors by October, when the district must report on its budget to the state, he said. If funding does not improve, the district will be forced to cut $500,000 this year and consider $3.3 million in cuts or reductions the following year.

Although district staff will wait to recommend what areas to cut, officials have said they are considering a $300,000 reduction in data processing.

The $500,000 amount resulted from a shortfall in anticipated state lottery and general funds for the 1989-90 school year. The remaining $3.3 million includes $1.3 million to help cover a 7.2% salary increase for teachers in 1990-91 and an estimated $2-million increase in health-care costs.

The larger cut could mean changes in employee benefit packages or a salary freeze, said David Kanthak, assistant superintendent of business services.

Board members in June adopted a cautious preliminary budget.

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