The Gilbert Unified School District governing board approved a $365 million budget for the upcoming school year Tuesday night.
However, until the Legislature approves the education funding portion of the 2009-10 state budget, Gilbert’s budget reflects only the maximum budget capacity that is possible for the upcoming school year, said Clyde Dangerfield, the assistant superintendent of business services.
“The Legislature is battling it out as we speak,” Dangerfield said Tuesday night. “They’re supposed to have the budget approved by midnight tonight.”
State lawmakers passed a budget to Gov. Jan Brewer early Wednesday morning. However, Brewer vetoed several items, including the portion that appropriates funding to public schools, because she said lawmakers cut too much from education.
The Legislature will come back Monday to begin work on a new budget.
Gilbert district officials estimate a $25.5 million budget deficit, which they have said is the “worst case scenario.”
Among the dozens of announced budget cuts, 275 positions were cut throughout the district because of class size changes and the realignment of several programs, including reducing art, music and physical education for kindergartners.
The governing board expects to adopt the actual budget on or before the July 15 deadline, which will be a more “accurate” version once the state budget is finalized, Dangerfield said.
The biggest part of the proposed 2009-10 Gilbert district budget includes $207.7 million in maintenance and operations, which pays for the majority of instructional costs, student transportation costs, general upkeep of district facilities, and district administration and support.