Truckee's Alder Creek Middle School
The Tahoe-Truckee Unified School District holds a budget meeting Thursday to address a projected $3 million deficit. But the local teachers union says the problem is overstated.
School district officials say a combination of declining property taxes and a huge state deficit will force them to reduce spending by about eight percent. They’re considering all options but warn that teacher layoffs and larger class sizes are inevitable.
But the Tahoe-Truckee Education Association says the numbers don’t add up. President Mike Merriman says the district is expecting up to a five percent increase in property taxes this year.
Merriman: "I’m just still questioning the fact that they continue to have an increase. Granted it’s not as much as it has been, but now how do we come up with this huge shortfall that they’re talking about?
Merriman acknowledges there are too many teachers in the face of a declining student population.
District officials say although property taxes are up, they’re still far below projections made last year. And most of all, they say, they’re worried about the massive education cuts expected to be part of a state budget deal.