MISD looking at $10-$17 million in budget cuts

MISD looking at $10-$17 million in budget cuts
(Source: KWES)

MIDLAND, TX (KWES) - The Midland Independent School District is facing budget cuts. They're looking at losing anywhere from 10 to 17 million dollars. District officials blame the oil slowdown. They are currently in the early stages of the budget process. Since 2014, the district has been planning out what changes need to be made but still manage their top priorities.

"We're really in the neighborhood of 56 million," said David Garcia, MISD's Chief Financial Officer. "We're at 51 right now so we're right on the edge."

Garcia says the growth of student enrollment and the taxable assessed value is what drives the district's revenue. The majority of the district's money comes from local taxpayers, but the economy in Midland has a large effect on the school's budget. The decline of working oil rigs and the drop in mineral values plays a factor.

"A drilling rig when its operating, is worth about a million and a half in value," said Garcia. "When it's sitting stacked in a yard, its only worth about 100 thousand dollars on the tax rolls, so you could see because there's not that many rigs out working in our district. We're going to lose values because we had hundreds operating in Midland ISD."

Garcia says the budget cut will not affect academics or extracurricular activities, so students will not have to face any drastic changes.

"The only impact to students that we might see at this point is there may be two to three more kids in a class than what we would normally have. If we staff it 20 to 1 at the secondaries, we would have to move that number up to 22 to 23 to 1."

He says the district is not looking to reduce the number of teachers.

"If we were to do that, we would hire less teachers because we typically have to hire between 250 to 350 teachers every year."

He says MISD's ultimate goal is to make sure their students still have the resources to be successful.

"One thing is your kids are going to be safe, they're going to be educated, we're going to feed them, we're going to take care of them. It may look a little different than it has in the past with a couple more people in the class, but hopefully it wont be so drastic."

The district and the board won't know the exact estimate on the budget cut until April 30th.

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