EV News Article 2
This article appears as the second of eight articles in a series that will be released to provide Easton Valley residents and friends with accurate information related to district operations. Chris Fee, EV Superintendent, and Adam Crigger, Business Manager will offer factual information in a question and answer format to respond to commonly asked questions in our community.
What happened to the $1 MILLION surplus Easton Valley residents were told the district would have at the time of the consolidation?
The short answer is…IT GREW. In fact, the surplus at the end of fiscal year 2016 was actually $1,559,588. The surplus amount that was most likely referred to at the time of the consolidation is known as Unspent Authorized Budget (UAB). This amount is the difference between the district’s expenditures and the legal budget authority the state of Iowa allows the school district to spend. The Iowa Association of School Boards recommends that districts maintain a UAB ratio between 5% and 15%, not to exceed 25%. Easton Valley CSD currently maintains our UAB at a very healthy 17%.
Questions about this promised surplus first emerged from residents during community engagement events where future facility plans were being discussed. Our community naturally wondered why we would need to explore a potential bond referendum when we were potentially sitting on a large surplus of funds. This notion can be quite confusing. A simple answer to this question is that this money is designated for instructional purposes only. These purposes include paying staff salaries and purchasing learning materials. Public schools are required by state law to spend funds according to strict guidelines, which in this case excludes funding facility improvements.
We would like to take this opportunity to thank all residents who have been participating in our facility planning events. The questions that have been raised have helped us to be more responsive to the interests of the great community we serve.