COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA
DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
P.O. BOX 2120
SUPTS. MEMO NO. 260
December 21, 2007
Billy K. Cannaday, Jr.
Superintendent of Public Instruction
Amendments to the Fiscal Year 2008 Direct Aid to Public Education Budget as Proposed by Governor Kaine (the Caboose Bill)
Governor Kaines proposed amendments to the fiscal year 2008 state budget (the Caboose Bill) were presented on Monday, December 17, 2007, before a joint session of the Senate Finance, the House Appropriations, and the House Finance committees. These amendments to the fiscal year 2008 (i.e., July 1, 2007, through June 30, 2008) budget will be considered by the 2008 Session of the General Assembly, which is scheduled to convene on January 9, 2008. The introduced budget bill containing the Governors amendments is House Bill 29/Senate Bill 29. The Governors proposed changes amend the fiscal year 2008 budget adopted at the 2007 Session (i.e., Chapter 847).
The recommendations made by the Governor regarding the Direct Aid to Public Education budget primarily include technical adjustments to the Standards of Quality (SOQ), incentive, categorical, and school facilities accounts. The Governors introduced budget provides funding for the state share of all SOQ programs and the continuation of all existing incentive, categorical, school facilities, and supplemental education programs in Direct Aid.
Attachment A to this memorandum provides a summary of the funding changes proposed by the Governor for fiscal year 2008 that affect the Direct Aid to Public Education and the Department of Education Central Office budgets. Key changes summarized in Attachment A include updates to fall membership and March 31 average daily membership (ADM), revised Sales Tax and Lottery revenue estimates, and updates to enrollments and participation in various incentive and categorical programs. In the department Central Office budget, additional funding is proposed to fully fund the cost of the National Board Certification bonus awards for the actual number of eligible teachers in fiscal year 2008.
Attachment B to this memorandum provides the estimated entitlements for each school division for the SOQ, incentive, categorical, and school facilities accounts for fiscal year 2008 based on the Governors proposed amendments. The estimated entitlements shown in Attachment B are based on the Department of Educations latest projections of March 31, 2008, average daily membership (ADM). The entitlements shown in Attachment B do not include the supplemental education grants authorized by the General Assembly that are unique to certain school divisions.
Several of the categorical account entitlements shown in Attachment B are funded on a reimbursement basis and represent the departments latest projected entitlements; however, final payments on these accounts for fiscal year 2008 will be based on actual, eligible reimbursement requests submitted by school divisions and approved by the department.
In addition to the entitlement information contained in Attachment B, a downloadable Excel file has been created to assist school divisions in calculating projected state entitlements and required local matches for fiscal year 2008 for most Direct Aid programs. This file gives divisions the opportunity to change ADM to test the effect on projected state funding and local match requirements using the departments projected ADM or a local projection of ADM. (Please note that the estimated entitlements shown for each school division in Attachment B are based on the departments projected ADM only and cannot be modified since Attachment B is in .PDF format.)
Although we have confidence in the accuracy of our ADM projections on a statewide basis, experience has shown that the accuracy of our ADM projections for individual divisions may vary. When divisions believe that they have more accurate projections of their March 31 ADM, they are encouraged to substitute their estimates for those provided in this memorandum when using the Excel calculation file. Also, please note that changing the ADM value in the Excel calculation file only changes the estimated funding for accounts that are funded on the basis of ADM. The estimated funding for all other accounts is unaffected by changing ADM in the Excel file and, therefore, remains the same.
Also note that sales tax estimates in the Excel calculation file are revenue estimates only. Actual sales tax payments made to school divisions on a semi-monthly basis in fiscal year 2008 will be based on actual sales tax receipts. Pursuant to the appropriation act, the Basic Aid entitlement calculation is based on the estimated sales tax appropriation only and is not adjusted for actual sales tax revenues received.
Attachment C to this memorandum provides detailed instructions for accessing the Excel calculation file from the Department of Education Web site. The Excel file may be downloaded from the following Web address: http://www.doe.virginia.gov/VDOE/Finance/Budget/calctools.html
It is important to remember that the information provided in Attachment B and in the Excel calculation file relates to the Governors proposed budget amendments for fiscal year 2008 as introduced. The House of Delegates and the Senate will have the opportunity to amend the Governors budget proposals during the 2008 General Assembly session. The General Assembly will adopt a final fiscal year 2008 budget before the end of the session, which is scheduled for March 8, 2008; therefore, the estimated entitlements contained in Attachment B and in the Excel calculation file are projections only and are subject to change as a result of legislative action by the 2008 General Assembly.
The department will provide additional information during the General Assembly session as changes to the estimated fiscal year 2008 Direct Aid entitlements occur. After the conclusion of the session, projected entitlements based on final General Assembly actions will be sent to you in another Superintendents Memorandum. Please note, the actual fiscal year 2008 entitlement payments will not be finalized until they are recomputed using actual March 31, 2008, ADM and other final program participation information.
Questions regarding the Governors proposed amendments to the fiscal year 2008 budget and the revised Direct Aid entitlements for fiscal year 2008 may be directed to Kent Dickey, assistant superintendent for finance, or budget office staff at (804) 225-2025.