A $2 million deficit forces the Meridian Community Unit School District 223 in Stillman Valley to take a serious look at their budget.
In an effort to make up for the deficit, board members offer several possible solutions. The first includes cutting staff members, and even programs like art and music.
Other options include two different possible referendums. The first would draw money to the school district through increased county sales tax. The second referendum would do the same through a property tax increase.
And last, the district is considering borrowing money through bonds. School Board President Bruce Larson says this last option would merely be a quick fix, and the problem would resurface in a few years.
Parents, like Cindy Raimer, who joined in the meeting offer their opinions and suggestions to board members.
"I'm fortunate that my husband and I would be able to support a referendum for the $2 million, but I am well aware that there are many families that could not be asked to make that financial impact to their budgets that are really struggling right now," says Raimer.
The Meridian CUSD 223 board will have two more public meetings on the topic. The next will be on January 9th, with another the following week on January 16th. They will then hold one final meeting on the 21st where a final decision will have to be made.
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