Benton-Carroll-Salem emerges from red in 2013


OAK HARBOR, Ohio — Benton-Carroll-Salem Schools has ended fiscal year 2013 in the black for the first time in five years, and projects balanced budgets through 2016.

The Ottawa County school district announced Friday that it was able to avoid a deficit between fiscal years 2012 and 2013 by reducing salaries and benefits to employees by $2 million.

Other expenses were reduced by $450,000, Superintendent Guy Parmigian said.

Treasurer Tim Coffman said the district recently completed its five-year financial forecast. That forecast is based on staffing needs, enrollment, and funding information but was subject to change, the district’s treasurer said.

“To go from four straight years of deficit spending to a projected four years without deficit spending is a momentous occasion,” Mr. Coffman said in a statement.

The district of approximately 1,500 students has 40 fewer positions in its certified and classified staff districtwide, he said.

Other changes made to cut costs included consolidating elementary buildings in Graytown, Carroll, and Rocky Ridge into R.C. Waters, which was reconfigured to handle kindergarten through third grade students.

Fourth-graders are sent to Oak Harbor Middle School, and eighth graders have a separate wing at Oak Harbor High School.

On Tuesday voters in the Benton-Carroll-Salem district will be asked to renew a 3.9 mill tax issue for current expenses, which generates $1.3 million a year, and a 1.2 mill levy for five years for permanent improvements. That levy raises $175,000 a year.