Sacramento City Unified School District says it has a $24 million deficit that will result in cuts and hiring freezes.
The district says a combination of raises that were negotiated with unions in November are one cause for the deficit. Increases to the amount the district is spending on retirement benefits to the state retirement system, CALSTRS, is another.
"We have to balance being a competitive employer and providing high quality instruction in the classroom and having the right people to do that with our fiscal realities," says district spokesman Alex Barrios.
Barrios says employees, management and other staff recently received 11.5 percent raises over three years.
The district's pension obligation also recently increased by 11 percent. That number is expected to increase, also as a result of the contracts negotiated last fall.
The district will pay for this year’s deficit out of a reserve fund, part of a $555.3 million budget approved by the school board Thursday. It will also institute a hiring freeze and will cut $4.2 million in programs including the Expanded Learning Summer Program.
The program was launched just this week.