Finances stable in South Routt School District

District may use fewer BOCES services

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— The South Routt School District may consider bringing more services in-district after the Northwest Board of Cooperative Educational Services announced that its member school districts were under-assessed and its budget overspent last year.

During a board meeting Thursday night, South Routt Superintendent Scott Mader said he had attended two conferences in the past week, one in Granby and another in Walden, where representatives from the organization and its member districts discussed ways to cover the $317,000 overspent last year. BOCES also announced that member districts were under-assessed a total of $481,000 last year.

In addition, BOCES owes the South Routt School District about $55,000 in federal funding from the 2008-09 school year.

Business manager Dina Murray said district finances remain stable, and the district submitted $80,000 to BOCES this month as half of the annual dues.

The other half of the dues are generally paid in April, and the board will then consider whatever reassessments BOCES decides.

"I can tell you this is complicated on a level beyond almost anything else I've encountered in my life," School Board President Tim Corrigan said.

Mader said that during a conference of superintendents in Walden on Wednesday, the group agreed with a BOCES proposal to use federal stimulus money to partially cover the deficit, but he said no resolution was reached.

Superintendents and BOCES representatives will meet again Tuesday to continue discussions.

At the Oct. 12 meeting in Granby, BOCES Executive Director Jane Toothaker said BOCES might be able to use $273,000 in federal stimulus funds to help cover the budget.

"So there's still some hope that we may not end up needing to backfill BOCES' budget," Corrigan said. "The news is substantially better than what you were reporting to us a few weeks ago."

"On the other hand, moving forward, we may take some of those services back into our district," Mader said.

BOCES, based in the same building that houses the Steamboat Springs School District offices on Seventh Street, provides its seven member districts with special education and other services.

The Yampa Valley School, an alternative school also based on Seventh Street, is run by BOCES for the three Routt County school districts.

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