School board struggles with project shortfalls
By Jack Kintner
The Blaine school board heard superintendent Ron Spanjer warn of a coming “significant impact by what is happening in the over-all economy,” at their regular meeting Monday night.
“The projections for state revenue shortfalls are continuing to climb,” Spanjer said, pointing out that in less than a week the governor’s projection has grown from $3.2 billion to $6 billion. Her budget is expected to be released December 10, Spanjer said.
“Just under half of current state expenditures support [public school grades] kindergarten through 12th grade. In 2004 the shortfall was less than $3 billion and the effect was dramatic,” Spanjer continued, adding that further complicating the picture was the likelihood that the legislature would not act immediately, waiting perhaps as late as June before giving the district a definite word as to just what the impact will be.
“We have to begin preparing for this in March,” Spanjer said. He has a fiscal review committee at work on finding cost savings in the mean time.
The board recognized Jerry Wolten with a certificate for his many years volunteering with the Blaine football program and presented Scott Ellis with a large framed certificate recognizing his being selected as vice-principal of the year for the Northwest League.
Todd Berge was re-elected president of the board and Charles Gibson was re-elected vice president in 2009. Campbell McClusky will be the legislative representative and Berge will continue as WIAA representative.