State lawmakers come to terms on a budget for California – 100 days after it was due

Well, better late than never.

California’s budget arrived 100 days late to be exact, setting a new mark for the longest budgetary impasse in state history. But by Oct. 8, lawmakers had approved a spending plan for the fiscal year that began in July. (The Los Angeles Times has more here.)

IUSD’s Business Services staff will closely scrutinize details of the plan in the days ahead. Yet initial reports indicate that the budget is at least a little more favorable to education than what was outlined in the governor’s proposal from May. That said, Gov. Schwarzenegger personally vetoed nearly $1 billion in welfare, child care and special education programs that will impact school districts, and most experts agree that California’s spending plan is based on some pretty rosy revenue assumptions that probably won’t hold up. That means mid-year cuts at the state level are a possibility.

You’ll recall that Irvine Unified adopted its budget for 2010-11 in June, which is when school districts are legally required to do so. (The state shares this deadline, but Sacramento is usually tardy.) In order to present a balanced budget, IUSD first had to approve a raft of budget reductions and adjustments to bridge a deficit estimated at about $20 million.

With costs coming in slightly lower than anticipated and revenue coming in higher, the district is now cautiously projecting positive ending balances through 2011-12. To read a recent update on IUSD’s finances from Superintendent Gwen Gross, click here.