On behalf of the Anchorage School Board, I appreciate everyone who participated in the community budget conversations. The Anchorage School District budget gap is projected at $49 million over the next two years. This is due to continued inflation and health care costs, flat operating funds from the legislature, and declining federal revenue associated with sequestration.
A recent letter to the Daily News expressed concern that ASD didn’t ask participants if they wanted to “choose books over hockey pucks and tennis balls” or whether residents should be taxed more. ASD has no taxing authority, nor a vote on the proposed tennis courts; those are both matters for the Assembly. Additionally, it incorrectly stated that participants could not discuss administrative positions; a series of questions posed to attendees did focus on staffing levels, specifically administration.
Another participant suggested not to fund sports fields. Those are funded through legislative grants and not district operating dollars.
Please also note that no decisions have been made yet regarding program or staff reductions. I encourage everyone to stay informed in our budget process.
— Ms. Tam Agosti-Gisler
Anchorage School Board