State and District Working Together In Light of Budget Shortfall - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

State and District Working Together In Light of Budget Shortfall

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The Washoe County School District faces an approximately $13 million shortfall over the next two years. This comes after the district created what they thought was a balanced budget. 

Now, district and state officials are trying to figure out what went wrong. 

On one hand, WCSD Superintendent, Traci Davis claims, "There was a working formula in which we utilized to balance a budget, and a different formula was used that we were unaware of." 

But the Nevada Department of Education says they shared the same model formula with all involved agencies. This includes the school district. 

Steve Canavero, the Superintendent of Public Instruction says, "We went through to ensure that there was no miscalculation or error. The model is functioning as the model should function." He added that, somewhere along the line, there was simply what he calls a 'communication breakdown.'

The fact remains the district still faces a $6.6 million budget shortfall, annually, over the next two years. Going forward, Canavero says, "I am definitively not interested in pointing fingers or blame." Instead, he says he's 'absolutely committed' to working with the WCSD to see exactly where that breakdown was and how they can prevent it from happening again.

For short-term relief, Governor Sandoval approved a piece of legislation to take a $5 million of marijuana excise tax money from the 'Rainy Day Fund' to help offset the district's deficit for the 2017-2018 school year. This money will go primarily toward transportation, police vehicles and information technology. 

However, it still leaves more than a $1 million gap for the upcoming school year. It also doesn't alleviate any of the projected $6.6 million deficit for the 2018-2019 school year. 

Davis says they have several solutions in mind but said those ideas will have to go through the school board first, before they provide any details. She added that they expect to have a finalized budget in place by the end of June.

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