CUYAHOGA FALLS — There were smiles from Board of Education members Nov. 20, as they viewed and then approved the latest five-year forecast that the district will file with the Ohio Department of Education.
With the recent passage of Issue 6, a 9.83-mill levy that will help fund operating expenses and include a bond issue to pay for a new 6-12 building, the district is now projected to end fiscal year 2020 with a $10.646 million cash balance.
"This is going to be the best forecast you’ve heard in a long time," said district treasurer Kristy Stoicoiu at the opening of her presentation to the board.
Out of the 9.83 mills, 4 mills will go toward district operating expenses.
The new operating funds are now included in the forecast, Stoicoiu said, adding the district will receive a half-year’s worth of tax money from the 4-mill portion of the levy in fiscal year 2020 and a full year of collection in fiscal year 2021.
"It’s very exciting," said Board member Anthony Gomez, who offered "a big thanks to our community."
Stoicoiu told the board there are four other levies on the books that will need to be renewed during the next five years.
A 7.9-mill levy is expiring in calendar year 2020 and will need to be renewed by the end of 2020 to ensure uninterrupted collection of property tax money. A 9.97-mill levy will expire in calendar year 2021 and a 4.75-mill levy and the 2017 emergency levy will both expire in calendar year 2022.
If all four levies are renewed in a timely manner, the district would be be able to keep a positive cash balance throughout the life of the forecast, resulting in projected cash balances of $10.646 million (2020), $11.905 million (2021), $11.188 million (2022), $9.096 million (2023), and $6.14 million (2024).
If renewal levies are not approved, the district could be facing a $645,994 deficit in fiscal year 2022, with even deeper fiscal holes in subsequent years.
Stoicoiu noted the forecast assumptions made are based on historical trends and information available at the time the document was filed.
Stoicoiu added that a conservative approach is used when preparing the information and data for the forecast. Such an approach provides flexibility in case unforeseen situations occur. Since the forecast is a "snapshot," she added that some of the information within it may change.
Reporter Phil Keren can be reached at 330-541-9421, firstname.lastname@example.org, or on Twitter at @keren_phil.