Merced high schools' budget looking healthier

dyawger@mercedsunstar.comJune 22, 2013 

— The Merced Union High School District's budget for the fiscal year beginning next month is likely to be considerably better than the situation last year, trustees learned Wednesday night.

Superintendent Scott Scambray said he was cautiously optimistic about the district's fiscal position. The board is due to adopt a final 2013-2014 budget at a special June 24 meeting.

"We will wait and see," Scambray said. "We won't spend it before we see the whites of their eyes, but we are in a lot better spot than a year ago."

Leonard Kahn, assistant superintendent for business services, told trustees by law they must approve a budget at a June board meeting. He said the maximum revenue the district may get is about $84 million, but that's only an optimistic guess.

At present, the amount of revenue expected from the state is very much in flux, Kahn said, and there are mixed signals from Gov. Jerry Brown and the state Legislature.

"While it's unclear, we fully expect a good deal more. We do realize there is more money forthcoming. We are sort of sitting on the bench waiting," Kahn said.

The district may get at least $1.5 million more, maybe even bigger amounts, he added.

In other matters, trustees may add a second monthly board meeting on the fourth Wednesday of the month if the number of agenda items warrants it, Scambray said.

Reporter Doane Yawger can be reached at (209) 385-2407 or dyawger@mercedsunstar.com.

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