ORION -- School board members on Wednesday learned the district won't be in bad shape, even if the state prorates aid to 74 percent.
Superintendent David Deets told board members such a change by the state wouldmean a $100,000 cut to the district. But he noted the district'sfund balances are almost $5 million, enough to keep the district in business for 65 days.
He noted accountants would prefer a 90-day cash reserve, or $4 million to $5 million more. But he noted "that's almost impossible to achieve in today's environment."
He credited building principals and staff with being prudent with money.
"I think we've accomplished tremendous efficiencies," he said. "We have more people doing more with less. We can be pleased our fund balances are as stable as they are."
School board president Doug Nelson recalled the worst of Orion's cash reserves years ago.
"At the bottom level, we were at 16 days and we knew we were in a world of hurt," he said.
Mr. Deets also said the district has maintained a "pretty good" tax rate in recent years that has been stable despite roof work. He said district officials are mindful that a low tax rate is key to growing the community.
"We bit the bullet some years ago and it was painful," he said, adding he didn't foresee any drastic reductions in the future.
Also on Wednesday, the board:
-- Learned Orion tied for the highest number of Illinois State Scholars among smaller districts in the area. Orion has nine: Drew Amador, Austin Anderson, Hannah Blaser, Melinda Buckrop, Katherine Garrity, Adam Killion, Tyler Nelson, Jacob Schulenberg and Benjamin Vanduyne.
-- Approved Moline's request to withdraw from the Black Hawk Area Special Education District. United Township and Silvis school boards also have approved the request.
-- Approved a $20,000 phone system Mr. Deets said should bring the district into this century while providing labor efficiencies.
-- Reviewed an informational sheet showing that, at halfway through the year, the district has spent 54 percent of its budgeted expenditures and taken in 49 percent of budgeted revenue.
Today is Saturday, April 19, the 109th day of 2014. There are 256 days left in the year.
1864 -- 150 years ago: Miss McCorkindale has opened millinery rooms over Gimbel's dry goods store, where she offers a choice lot of millinery goods, which she will manufacture to order. 1889 -- 125 years ago: The little South Park Presbyterian chapel celebrated it first Easter decorated with flowers for an afternoon worship service attended by a large congregation. 1914 -- 100 years ago: The Wennerberg Chorus of Augustana College has returned from a 2,000-mile tour in the Eastern states and Illinois. 1939 -- 75 years ago: Col. Charles Lindbergh has stated that he is convinced that Germany's air force is equal to the combined sky fleets of her potential European foes. 1964 -- 50 years ago: Small gas motors may be permitted on boats in the lake to be built in Loud Thunder Forest Preserve. The prospect was discussed yesterday at a meeting of the Rock Island County Forest Preserve Commission. 1989 -- 25 years ago: The annual Dispatch/Rock Island Argus Spelling Bee continues to be a family tradition. Ed Lee, an eighth-grader at John Deere Junior High School, Moline, is the 1989 spelling bee champion from among 49 top spellers in Rock Island, Henry and Mercer counties. He advances to the competition in Washington, D.C. Runnerup was Ed's sister, Susan.