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KWBB CW10 South Texas :: News - Top Stories - BISD outlines reasons for declaring financial exigency; board agenda released for vote Thursday on cutting 300 jobs as part of $25 million reduction

BISD outlines reasons for declaring financial exigency; board agenda released for vote Thursday on cutting 300 jobs as part of $25 million reduction

BEAUMONT - The Beaumont ISD has released its agenda for Thursday's meeting and it outlines the reasons the superintendent is asking the board to declare a financial exigency and approve 300 job cuts as part of a $25 million reduction plan.


Last week, Dr. Timothy Chargois emailed a letter to employees in which he wrote the district must cut 225 contract positions and 75 at-will jobs as part of a plan to save $25 million. 


Click here to read the letter.


Here is the information from the Thursday, May 29 agenda, outlining why the superintendent is asking the board to declare a financial exigency:



BEAUMONT INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT


BOARD RESOLUTION


WHEREAS, Texas Education Code section 44.011 authorizes a Board of Trustees to declare a financial exigency; and


WHEREAS, the financial position of Beaumont Independent School District ("BISD") as a whole is such that the financial resources of BISD are insufficient to support the District's instructional programs and the District is unable to finance the full compensation of staff for the current and succeeding fiscal years ("FY"), including FY 2013-2014 and FY 2014-2015; and


WHERAS, BISD has experienced a decrease of more than 20% in unassigned General Fund balance per student in weighted average daily attendance over the past two years; and


WHEREAS, BISD has experienced a decline in student enrollment by more than 10% over the past five years; and


WHEREAS, BISD has experienced a reduction of more than 10% of the General Fund total funding per student in weighted average daily attendance over one year and projects a reduction of 10% compared to FY 2013-2014; and


WHEREAS, these changes impacting the District's financial position will result in a budget deficit in the amount of $____ for FY 2014-2015; and


WHEREAS, the Board has considered budget options in order to produce a budget reduction of $____ million for FY 2014-2015; and


WHEREAS, pursuant to BISD Policy DFFA (Local), the BISD Superintendent of Schools recommends, and the Board hereby declares, a financial exigency; and


WHEREAS, BISD will address this serious fiscal crisis of the FY 2013-2014 and FY 2014-2015 thoughtfully and forcefully to protect the educational mission of BISD, protect the employability of BISD staff, and protect the future fiscal security of BISD; and


NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED THAT:


The Board of Trustees of the Beaumont Independent School District hereby declares a financial exigency that may result in the discharge or non-renewal of one or more employees within the District; and


BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT: This declaration of a financial exigency shall continue for FY 2014-2015;


BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT:


The declaration of financial exigency results in a reduction in force pursuant to Policy DFFA (Local); and


BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT:


As a component of the declaration of financial exigency, the Board of Trustees of BISD hereby directs the Superintendent to follow Policy DFFA (Local) and return to the Board with recommendations for employment areas to be affected by the reduction in force.


PASSED BY VOTE AND APPROVED this 29th day of May, 2014.


President, Board of Trustees, Beaumont Independent District


Gwen Ambres


Secretary, Board of Trustees, Beaumont Independent District


_______________________________________


Terry D. Williams


Pursuant to Texas Education Code Section 44.011, the Board shall notify the Commissioner of Education of the adoption of this resolution within 20 calendar days of adoption by submitting notice of the date the resolution was adopted and the reason(s) for the declaration of financial exigency to the Texas Education Agency division responsible for financial audits; the notice must be signed by the Board President.


 


BEAUMONT (Friday) - Beaumont Independent School District superintendent Dr. Timothy Chargois issued a letter Friday about his recommendation for reducing employee positions as part of an effort to cut expenditures by about $25 million.

Click here to read the letter.


He will recommend to the board that the district eliminate 225 contract positions and 75 at-will jobs.


Board member Woodrow Reece tells KFDM News he expects the board to talk about the recommendation at the May 29 meeting, during which the board will hold its first discussions about the 2014-2015 budget.


In his letter to employees, Dr. Chargois says the district is facing "difficult financial challenges that will require serious remedies." He says administrators and the board are "carefully evaluating the District's options to reduce approximately $25 million of expenditures." According to Chargois, personnel costs account for more than 80 percent of BISD operating expenses, making it impossible to balance the budget without eliminating positions, both at-will and contractual.


He says a reduction in force due to financial exigency, and several program changes, are necessary.


In his letter, Dr. Chargois says "as we face these difficult decisions, we are well aware that there are names, faces and careers behind these positions and the painful effects these decisions will have on our community."


Employees affected by the reduction in force are expected to be notified by June 12.


Dr. Chargois says the district will also find other ways to save money, including reducing or eliminating programs, following new staffing guidelines and revising insurance obligations.


Here is some of the reaction KFDM News has gathered about the recommendation:




Janice Brassard/BISD board vice-president: "We have not cut personnel in at least 3 years, if not more, and the state cut our funding. When other districts were eliminating positions all over the state, we didn't. We kept everybody. There's basically no other option."  


Mike Neil/BISD board member: "I think that it's an unfortunate and appropriate move. We're in a dire financial situation. This reduction in force is something that should have been done two years ago, but we have to deal with the present, so he has my full support. I hope that the appropriate cuts are made, starting with administration. There have been a lot of positions added in the last years that aren't needed."


Woodrow Reece/BISD board member: "We must approve it.  We have some tough decisions to make. It has to be done. It's very unpopular but we have no choice. We've done so much when we had money. When we don't have money we can't do it. We're still taking care of our employees better than most school districts. Some people are leaving the district and others are retiring. I don't think we'll have to lay off 300 people. Many of the cuts can be made through attrition. I'd be very surprised if we have to lay off 300 people."


 


 


BISD outlines reasons for declaring financial exigency; board agenda released for vote Thursday on cutting 300 jobs as part of $25 million reduction

Monday, May 26 2014, 07:37 PM CDT
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