CCSD report: State funding ‘cut’ results in increased funding to CCSD

Victor Joecks

I’m currently reading CCSD’s 2011 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report and came across this gem.

In their transmittal letter, CCSD Superintendent Dwight Jones and CCSD School Board President Carolyn Edwards write (p. xviii):

During fiscal year 2010, the Nevada legislature was forced to respond to continued declines in revenues and cut state aid to the district from their original budgeted amounts. The result was that the District only received an additional $10 per pupil in fiscal year 2011 over fiscal year 2010. (Emphasis added.)

Two things are remarkable here. First, this is yet another example of how often government ‘cuts’ are actually spending increases. After assuming an increase in spending, government agencies turn around and label reductions in future spending as a “cut,” even if they receive more funding than they did the year before.

Second, this description, sadly, is actually better than most. At least it notes that the “cut” in state funding was from the “originally budgeted amount.”

Many times government officials, including Gov. Brian Sandoval, Sen. Michael Roberson, Assemblyman Pat Hickey, and Assemblyman Marcus Conklin, just assert that spending more on education is a “cut,” without any explanation that the state is, in fact, spending more.

It’s time to acknowledge that Nevada has nearly tripled inflation-adjusted, per-pupil spending in the last 50 years and that spending more and hiring more teachers hasn’t increased student achievement.