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CEDAR FALLS — Central Rivers Area Education Agency’s Board of Directors last week approved a $52.51 million budget.

The 2018-19 spending plan, which goes into effect July 1, represents a 1.65 percent increase over the $51.66 million budget for the current year.

David Nicholson, chief financial officer, said slight increases for salaries, benefits and utilities are included in the budget. In addition, there are new state funds for Title I reading and professional development.

However, the budget estimates no increase in the allowable growth of state foundation aid.

“It’s built on zero percent and a $7.5 million cut,” said Nicholson, across AEAs throughout the state. “For us, that’s slightly over $1 million.” The reduction was a permanent cut made by the Legislature several years ago.

State aid is set at $15.42 million while juvenile home funding and other state revenues are estimated at $4.58 million. Property tax revenues are estimated at $12.72 million. Both state aid and property tax funding are based on enrollment levels and flow to the agency through the 53 school districts it serves.

Federal funding in the budget is estimated at $16.56 million. Tuition and transportation funding, earnings on investments and other revenues from local sources total $6.27 million.

On the expenditure side, $8.13 million is estimated for classroom instruction. Student and staff support services are estimated at $33.31 million. Another $7.42 million is budgeted for general, building, business and central administration.

Debt service of $475,343 is the annual payment for the agency’s lease purchase of its headquarters building. Remaining line items for purchasing, plant operations, student transportation, noninstructional programs, facilities acquisition and construction, and other support services come to $3.17 million.

In other business, he agency will offer three health insurance plans with deductibles ranging from $1,500 to $3,500, with the highest a health savings account. Currently the plans have deductibles ranging from $1,000 to $2,500 and no HSA. It also will move from a fully insured to a self-funded insurance plan.

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Education Reporter

Education reporter for the Courier

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