August 23, 2010
The Civic Federation supports the Chicago Public Schools proposed $6.5 billion budget for FY2011, which is a reduction of 5.9% or $402.3 million from the proposed FY2010 budget. The proposed budget offers a short-term solution to the District’s difficult, deepening financial crisis. This budget will allow schools to open on time and continue to provide students with access to education across Chicago.
While acknowledging that the District was left with few options to close its budget deficit for this fiscal year, the Civic Federation is very concerned that the FY2011 budget provides no protection for next year. Three components of the FY2011 budget proposal individually expose the District to greater financial risk in future years, including the District’s proposal to draw down its entire reserve fund, its ongoing structural budget and taking a partial pension payment holiday for the next three years. Combined, these factors signal that more difficult times will lie ahead for the District.