(513) 231-3600

Treasurer Provides May Update to Five-Year Forecast

May 18, 2023

Forest Hills School District Treasurer Alana Cropper provided the annual May update to the five-year forecast during the Regular Board Meeting held on May 17, 2023. The forecast is a document that analyzes multiple years of past financial data and projects General Fund revenues and expenditures over the coming five years. The treasurer releases an initial forecast in November and an update in May of each school year.

The forecast only includes the district’s General Fund, so it does not encompass all spending by Forest Hills School District. Ohio Revised Code and Ohio Administrative Code require Boards of Education to submit a five-year projection of operational revenues and expenditures along with assumptions to the Department of Education prior to Oct. 31 of each fiscal year and to update this forecast between April 1 and May 31 of each fiscal year.

You will find helpful links including copies of the forecast, the Treasurer’s slideshow presentation and a recording of the Board Meeting at the bottom of this article. Treasurer Cropper emphasized that the five-year forecast is a planning tool for the district, and one that is subject to change over time as new data and information is known.

Graph showing the May 2023 five-year forecast summary.

The Forecast Summary shown above indicates the overall projected revenue, expenditures and cash balance through the 2027 fiscal year (2026-2027 school year). According to the updated forecast, FHSD’s General Fund is anticipated to have a nearly $17 million remaining cash balance at the end of FY27, although it projects that annual expenditures will begin exceeding annual revenues in FY26.

Treasurer Cropper explained in her presentation that many factors out of the district’s control have an impact on the forecast. Legislative mandates, instructional needs tied to state requirements, inflationary increases to the cost of goods and purchased services, economic factors and the amount of state aid are all subject to changes year-over-year.

In comparison to the initial forecast presented in November, there are multiple important changes Treasurer Cropper pointed out. The most noticeable change is the passage of the 5.4 operational levy in the May 2, 2023 election (the 1.5 mill permanent improvement levy cannot be applied to the General Fund and is, therefore, not part of the five-year forecast). Increased revenues from the new levy create a much different financial picture over the coming years.

The $750,000 of planned reductions that FHSD included as part of the May 2 levy plan are also now factored into the forecast. A similar amount of money is projected to be moved from General Fund expenditures to Permanent Improvement Fund expenditures, which leads to an additional reduction of overall expenditures in the five-year forecast. The 1.5 mill permanent improvement levy is anticipated to cover some costs for maintenance, physical repairs, facility improvements and related items that have previously been included in the General Fund.

For a detailed overview of this update to the five-year forecast, please refer to the May 17, 2023 Board Meeting that was recorded and available to watch on the district’s YouTube page. That video and other helpful documents, including the five-year forecast itself, are linked below.