Numbers that tell a story

… and the story is that the year-end spending binge is starting.

As of the end of  March, the amount spent plus (contractually) committed was actually less than at the same time last year – despite the budget being $2 million larger.  Many people attending deliberative must have thought that a flat-line budget would necessarily take a chain saw to the school district’s needs, yet we can see this year that with 9 months out of 12 behind us, including the heating season, we are at the same level of spending as the previous year.  The dollar amounts…  $57,225,906 this year, compared to $57,680,734 as of March 31 2013.

We have to fear heavy spending in April, May and June.

April shows the start of the trend.  First, let’s look at last year.  There was just over $4 million spent in April 2013..  but..  almost all of that was spending on items previously committed by contract.  The total expenditure plus committed amount at the end of April 2013 was only $218,380 higher than the end of the prior month.  This tells us that the district was making almost no new spending commitments in April 2013.

By contrast, in April this year, expenditure was $4.5 million.  This is somewhat higher than April 2013, but not greatly out of line.  However, the more interesting figure is the change in total commitment – $1.4 million.  This is an indication of new spending decisions.

Arthur Green, guest blogger




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