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Austin School Trustees To Vote Monday On Financial Exigency

AISD Superintendent Meria Carstarphen appears in a YouTube video posted by the district this week explaining the dire budget situation.

Austin school board members will be asked to vote Monday night on a resolution that would declare the district to be in a state of "financial exigency", or "financial emergency" in common English. Such a move would grant more flexible staffing powers to Superintendent Meria Carstarphen, who has proposed laying off more than 1,000 people to help close the school district's budget deficit, currently estimated to be in the neighborhood of $94 million.

The administration would recommend which positions would be terminated on March 28. That would be subject to board approval.

School board members will also get an update Monday on the state of school district finances. District financial chief Nicole Conley-Abrams has prepared a preliminary budget for 2011-12 school year, and will illustrate it to board members with this PowerPoint presentation.

Meanwhile, the school district uploaded a 21 minute long YouTube video earlier this week that aims to explain how it wound up in the financial hole it's in, and how it might dig itself out. It's not the most thrilling YouTube video in the world (9 views in 6 days), but if you can endure monotonous financial presentations, you may learn a lot about the AISD budget.

Nathan Bernier is the transportation reporter at KUT. Got a tip? Email him at Follow him on Twitter @KUTnathan.
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