Portland Public School officials say they have more money to spend, in light of a more favorable financial picture. The revised numbers come in advance of a school board budget discussion Tuesday.
The Portland district said back in October that the budget had $16 million more than initially anticipated. Now, that surplus has grown to more than $19.5 million.
The sources of the additional funds are much the same as they were in October: savings on utility bills from equipment upgrades, lower retirement costs, and higher income from both local property taxes and in reimbursements from the federal government.
In materials for the school board to consider, district officials recommend using most of the additional money to shore up reserve funds and to service debt.
The additional funds are sure to influence contract negotiations between teachers and administrators. The two sides are split on a handful of financial issues, including early retirement incentives, how many additional instructors to hire, and the length of the school year.