Stakeholder Letter-Finances-3/27

Stakeholder Letter - Finances - 03-27-2017
Posted on 03/27/2017

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March 27, 2017

Dear District #205 Stakeholder:

As you are aware, in June of 2016, a state budget was passed that included a 12 month spending plan for K-12 education. It however only contained a six month spending plan for all other government services. Estimates suggest the state spending deficit is growing by $11 million dollars every day that we do not have a complete state budget.

How does this impact our community and District #205? District #205 has been receiving our General State Aid payments on time during FY ‘17. We, however, have not received any Mandated Categorical payments from the State for FY ‘17. Mandated Categorical payments are payments from the State that we receive for providing services we are compelled to provide, and for which the State provides only partial reimbursement to the District. Examples include Special Education Services, Transportation, and the State portion of our Breakfast and Lunch program. In fact, District #205 just recently received our last quarterly Mandated Categorical payment for the previous school year in December of 2016, a full six months after it was due. For District #205, the Mandated Categorical payments total approximately $2.8 million dollars. In addition, District #205 also serves as the fiscal agent for the Knox Warren Special Ed Coop. That means the Mandated Categorical payments due to the Knox Warren Special Ed Coop are not flowing into District #205 either. The Coop alone is due approximately $1.37 million dollars.

It has been verified that the Illinois State Board of Education has issued vouchers to the Illinois Comptroller’s office to pay us the money that is due. It is likely that we will, at some point in the future, receive that money. The question is when will we receive those payments and in the meantime, do we have enough cash available to us to pay our current bills.

In the short term, as a result of not receiving the Mandated Categorical payments for FY ‘17, we are indeed very concerned about our cash flow; that is, having enough money in our checking account each month to meet our financial obligations. In total the State’s delay in paying their bills on time could mean that we don’t have access to as much as $5 million dollars to pay our upcoming monthly bills in this school year. Again, please keep in mind, all of this is the result of the State of Illinois not having a complete budget.

In an effort to be proactive, over the last two years the District #205 Board of Education has approved recommendations to reduce our District budget by over $3 million dollars. In addition, the Board has approved recommendations to increase our local property tax receipts. The stakeholders of this District are doing their share to deal with our budget crisis. It is now time for the State of Illinois to do their share and pass a full year, balanced budget for all Illinois stakeholders and to pay their bills on time.

At this time, I would like to encourage each of you to contact our local legislators, the legislative leaders, and the Governor’s office regarding this situation. Please call or write them today to let them know your position on this issue. Let them know your concerns about their inability to do the one thing they are responsible for; which is providing services to the residents of this state. Tell them how the lack of a state budget and not paying their bills on time has impacted you personally or will impact you if the budget stalemate continues. We need a full year budget for the State of Illinois and we need one that fully funds education and ensures full, timely payment of all monies due to us. Encourage them to pass a complete state budget for FY ‘18. Stakeholders across the State did just that last year and I truly believe as a result, we were effective in getting at least a partial year state budget and a full year spending plan for K-12 education.

This situation has gone on long enough. We need immediate action from our legislators, our legislative leaders, and the Governor. For your convenience, I have included the contact information for our local legislators, the legislative leaders, and the Governor.

I thank you in advance for taking the time to read this letter and for taking a proactive approach to this problem. The future of Galesburg District #205 as well as the 4500 Pre-K - 12 students we serve each day depends on us taking action immediately.

If you have any questions or concerns about this situation, please do not hesitate to contact me.


Ralph Grimm
Galesburg CUSD #205 Superintendent
(309) 973-2100


Rep. Dan Swanson
536 Oxford Ave. Suite D
Woodhull, IL 61490
(309) 334-7474

240-W Stratton Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-8032
Senator Chuck Weaver
5415 N. University, Suite 105
Peoria, IL 61614
(309) 693-4923

M103C State Capital Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-9586
Rep. Norine Hammond
331 N. Lafayette St.
Macomb, IL 61455
(309) 836-2707

209-N Stratton Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-0416

Senator Jil Tracy
3701 East Lake Centre Dr. Suite 3
Quincy, IL 62305
(217) 223-0833

207 N Stratton Office Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-8096

Rep. Michael Madigan
300 Capitol Buildling
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-5350
Senator John Cullerton
327 Capital Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-2728
Rep. James Durkin
316 Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-0494

Senator Christine Radogno
105A Capital Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-9407

Governor Bruce Rauner
207 State Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-0244

Rep. Randy Frese
230 N. Stratton Office Building
Springfield, IL 62706


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