Right after Kuna school board members voted unanimously last month to accept a series of cuts and revenue-generating measures for next year’s budget, a couple of audience members let out an enthusiastic, “whoooo!” putting a positive exclamation point on a difficult subject.
In many ways, it was fitting, as it seemed we all let out a sigh of relief at the apparent end of a difficult process of dealing with a shortfall of revenue from the state. The clouds did seem to part and it felt like a pall had been lifted from a painful weeks- long process.
The results seem fair. Everyone, it seems, bears a burden in the cost-cutting. Teachers will take a 4 percent pay cut in furlough days, some students will have to pay a very small fee to park at the high school, those participating in sports will have to come up with money to pay for travel to away games, a couple more administrators were cut and the superintendent and assistant superintendent took pay cuts in furlough days.
The pain seems to be spread around equitably and fairly.
With all that said, though, I would like to see the Kuna school board take a different approach to the budget next year. After all, I feel, it should be the school board members, not a budget reduction team, that sets and passes the yearly budget. And the school board members should have all of the information in front of them, not just a condensed version presented to them by the district administration.
You can read the rest of this opinion in this week's Editor's Notebook in the Kuna Melba News.