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St. Louis School Board to Discuss Possible Budget Cuts

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By Kevin Lavery, KWMU

St. Louis – St. Louis school officials are preparing for what may be a contentious meeting Tuesday night.

The board will discuss a range of options for staving off a $23 million budget gap next fiscal year.

Those options include staff cuts and salary and benefit reductions. The board will not take action on the proposals during the meeting.

Chief financial officer Harry Rich says the district's immediate goals are to slow overspending and pay back money borrowed from the desegregation settlement.

"We have a $7 million obligation at the end of next year - June 30 of next year - that we must pay back $7 million of what we had borrowed this year to get through this year," Rich said. "That's phase one and phase two. Phase three is to get back to financial health."

The district will host seven public information sessions this month to present its options to the community. The board will take action in April.

School board member Rochell Moore is reportedly coming to the meeting, though a temporary restraining order issued against her last week prohibits her from any contact with fellow board member Amy Hilgemann.

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