Thursday, November 15, 2007


The Brainerd School Board has begun looking at ways to trim $5.5-Million from next year's budget. Members of the board had hoped taxpayers would approve a levy referendum that would have added more then $50-Million to school coffers over the next ten years, but voters said no. At the first budget-cutting meeting after the failed referendum, the board looked at transportation costs and ways to save money. District transportation coordinator Kala Henkensiefken said the district could save $300,000 a year if it required students within two miles of their school to get there on their own and require students to go to the school closest to where they live. Henkensiefken told the Brainerd Dispatch the district could save another $150,000 in transportation costs by closing Nisswa Elementary. Brainerd school administrators have said they may suggest closing two of the district's eight elementary schools to reduce the budget. The meeting on Wednesday, November 14th was to show the board preliminary data. The school board finance committee will meet on Thursday, November 29th to decide which two of the eight schools to close and look at other ways to cut the budget.

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