SARTELL -- The Minnesota State Legislature voted to put more money into the K-12 education budget, however, the increase in funding won't be enough to get the Sartell-St. Stephen school district out of a projected budget deficit.

Director of Business Services Joe Prom says the district is still projected to have a deficit of between $450,000 and $500,000 for the budget year starting on July 1st. He says that's because the district was assuming a two-percent funding increase per year, which is what happened.

For us, it was really more of a relief than anything.  We had budgeted for a two percent increase in the general education basic formula and that's what we'll be receiving in the next two years.  And then we are also receiving a little bit of additional special ed aid, which amounts to about $20 per student for us, so just about $80,000 in total.

Prom says the district will dip into its reserve funds to pay for the budget shortfall.

The Sartell-St. Stephen school board will be discussing the possibility of putting an operating levy question on the November ballot, but no decisions have been made yet.

Last month the school board agreed to nearly $1.3 million in budget cuts to help get closer to a balanced budget.

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