Birmingham Schools Face Deficit after Cuts

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - Birmingham schools could end the fiscal year in the red in more than a decade after the state increased cuts at the eleventh hour.

Arthur Watts, the school district's chief financial officer, told the school board that he's poring over the books to see if the system can prevent a deficit. The new fiscal year began Friday but the district is still hashing out last year's budget.

Gov. Bob Riley enacted an additional 2 percent in cuts to the state's education budget two weeks ago, taking another $3 million from Birmingham schools on top of the $11 million in cuts earlier in the year.

Watts called the additional cuts "absolutely devastating."

The 2011 budget is about $3.2 million in the red already but will be balanced because of the federal jobs bill that Congress passed in August.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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