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Sequestration Could Impact Caldwell-West Caldwell School Budget

Districts across New Jersey await state aid figures this week with uncertainty.

Caldwell-West Caldwell Schools face the deadline to submit the 2013-2014 budget to the county next week with uncertainty as to whether $85 billion in federal "sequestration" spending cuts will be stopped by Congress before Friday. 

James Heinegg, superintendent of Caldwell-West Caldwell Schools, said the district will learn its state aid figures this week after Gov. Chris Christie delivers his fiscal year 2014 budget address Tuesday afternoon.

The release of the state aid figures triggers a sequence of events related to the budget process, Heinegg said, including the Board of Education approving the proposed school budget on March 5. The budget is due to the county for review next week.

“The governor gives his address tomorrow and then 48 hours after that, which is prior to March 1, that’s when we expect to get our state aid for ‘13-’14,” Heinegg said.

New Jersey could lose nearly $12 million in funding for primary and secondary education if Congress fails to halt the “sequestration” by Friday, according to figures released by the White House. 

“Since all of this is interconnected, it seems like the state would have to stick with the time frame,” Heinegg said. “I think everybody is wondering how [the sequestration] would affect things.”

Caldwell-West Caldwell Schools , which was 24.7% more, or $190,700, over the previous year.

West Essex Regional Schools Superintendent Barbara Longo was not available for comment Monday. West Essex, which serves the sending districts of North Caldwell, Essex Fells, Fairfield and Roseland, received $996,142 in state aid for 2012-13, according to a spokesperson for the district.

Without action from Congress, the sequester would go into effect automatically on March 1, reducing spending by the state in a number of areas, including education, the environment, health, military and law enforcement, the White House said.

The cuts, according to the Obama administration, could jeopardize 160 teacher and aide jobs in New Jersey, as well as cut funding to 60 schools and 15,000 students.

Funding would be cut to the early childhood education program Head Start, vaccination programs for children and health services for seniors, among other things, and thousands of civilian Department of Defense employees could be furloughed, according to the White House.

The total federal spending cuts under the sequester add up to about $1.2 trillion over the next nine years.

Republicans have accused the president of using the impending cuts for political gain.

President Barack Obama's plan asks for increased tax revenues to offset some of the trillion-dollar cuts.

Michael February 26, 2013 at 02:12 PM
The Libs wanted it... so let it roll. This is exactly what happens when States keep spending and spending and running to the Federal Government for handouts. Its about time we work on a 30 year program to push back and get our States spending under control, that in turn will automatically shrink the Federal Government, I can't imagine anyone would believe that the Federal Government would fire itself for poor management.
Michael February 26, 2013 at 02:36 PM
"President Barack Obama's plan asks for increased tax revenues to offset some of the trillion-dollar cuts". In the real world if you cut spending, you don't need to make up for it with more income, I would like to see this guys math grades. Once you cut spending everyone will adjust, they will find all the waste just like they did with the 2007 and on going recession we aren't in, you will find all the thieves and crooks, but this time get rid of them, that simple, there is plenty of money to teach our children, keep us safe, etc. etc. but of course the left will start cutting where the tax payers will feel it the most to make a point, and all the crooks will keep lining their pockets.

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