Albuquerque Public Schools Superintendent Winston Brooks says the district could eliminate 700 jobs as part of his plan to close a larger than expected budget gap.
APS officials say that cuts in funding from the legislature will contribute to a $43 million shortfall – more than double what the district had expected.
State budget cuts will account for $24 million of the shortfall. The district has $15 million in its cash reserves. An additional $4 million will go to salary and benefits adjustments.
Brooks says there will most likely be layoffs of about 700 employees, an estimated 500 retirements and resignations will not be filled and a hiring freeze may have to be implemented.
Overtime and non-payroll spending could also be reduced and non-school departments will have to cut about 5% of their budgets and 40% of their discretionary spending.
And, Brooks cautioned, federal stimulus money isn't expected for the 2011-2012 school year, which could cause the budget gap to balloon to $100 million.
APS currently employees 14,000 people including teachers, administrators and custodians and has 139 campuses, according to the district’s Website.
Based on last year’s budget, roughly 85% of the district’s operating budget goes toward paying salaries and benefits.
The APS Board of Education will meet on April 1.