Jul 31, 2014 10:37 PM by Tina Macias

Budget Balanced by the Lafayette Parish School Board

The Lafayette Parish School Board balanced its budget tonight by approving deep cuts to departmental budgets and using $3.8 million of its rainy-day fund.

The board began the meeting with a $5.8 million deficit, which did not include most of the deep departmental cuts the board made earlier this month.

But the deficit shrunk quickly when the board approved more than $4 million in departmental cuts.

It restored funding to the PACE arts program, and, although, staff asked that it restore more than 90 percent of its cuts, it only made minor changes and gave the staff $2.5 million to use for appeals, about half of what they requested.

Those appeals will need to be approved by the board, and another budget meeting has not yet been set.

The budget process might hit another snag -- Superintendent Pat Cooper said he'll take the board's recommendations "under consideration" and come back with another budget.

He argued that it's his responsibility to bring a budget to the board, but board members noted that they have the authority to amend and approve the budget.



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