INDEPENDENCE — The Central School District Budget Committee unanimously approved a $56,440,544 budget for the 2019-20 school year on May 20.

Superintendent Jennifer Kubista, in her budget message, said the budget should allow the district to maintain current staffing and programming, “based on the current information from the legislature.”

Funding for the 2019-21 biennium is still unknown.

“This year represents an increase of just over 9.7 percent,” Kubista wrote in her budget message. “The growth is due to the expenditure of one-time funds carried into the budget year and continued funding of large grants.”

The budget reflects an expected 24 percent increase in the cost for the Public Employee Retirement System fund, she said.

Kubista said for the first time in more than a decade, the general fund may have to supplement the food service program.

Additionally, the district has started negotiations with the Central Education Association, which represents classified employees.

“The budget includes a 2 percent increase overall to salaries with no increase to other benefits, including insurance, for this group,” Kubista said. “Increases for other groups of employees are known or anticipated and included in the line items.”

A budget hearing and special meeting is scheduled for June 24.

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