Making school districts whole costs Nevada $8.2 million |

Making school districts whole costs Nevada $8.2 million

The Senate Finance Committee on Friday approved a bill to make up the shortfall in the Distributive School Account that pays for K-12 education across Nevada.

The shortfall occurred over the past two-year budget cycle because of unanticipated increases in enrollment above and beyond what was budgeted by the 2017 Legislature. Under state law, the state is required to make up any shortfall experienced by the 17 school districts.

For the current fiscal year, the districts realized total DSA revenues of $1,154,508,953. That is $27,276,468 less than they were expected to receive.

Lawmakers were able to make up $19.4 million of that using recreational and medical marijuana revenues. Slot tax revenue, the permanent school fund interest and federal mineral lease revenues also helped reduce the hit to the state budget.

Unfortunately, room tax revenues dedicated to K-12 education fell nearly $10 million short this fiscal year.

In the end, the state had to make up the rest of the shortfall with $8,246,261 in general fund revenue.

That is the amount in SB520, the Supplemental Appropriation bill that was approved by the finance committee Friday.

The bill goes to the Senate floor for a vote next week.