Chicago Board of Ed approves 2018-19 CPS’ school budget over objections

Jul 25, 2018 by

Over a slew of objections about where the money would be spent, Chicago’s Board of Education unanimously voted on Wednesday to approve $7.6 billion in operating and capital budgets for the upcoming school year.

The $5.9 billion operating budget is structurally balanced for the first time in two years, thanks to a new state funding formula that benefits Illinois’ largest district, which will project a cash surplus of $232 million once the books are closed on the 2017-18 school year, also an anomaly in recent years. Such a vote, as CPS begged the state for help for the last few years, hasn’t been taken before August since 2014.

But the plans laying out CPS’ spending still depend on massive amounts of borrowing, including much of the $989 million that district officials and a mayor facing reelection have pledged toward capital projects, including two new high school buildings. That borrowing comes on top of some $8.2 billion in existing debt, as the Civic Federation has noted, though CPS’ budget director said Wednesday that CPS was able to cut its dependence on the kind of short-term borrowing akin to using credit cards by about half a billion dollars.

continue: Chicago Board of Ed approves 2018-19 CPS’ school budget over objections

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