WILDWOOD CREST - The school district has cut about $600,000 from its proposed 2010-11 school budget, meaning the school tax increase would be 1.03 cents compared to the original increase of 4.4 cents.

Those cuts, however, mean the district will be eliminating jobs, although the exact number of jobs involved has yet to be decided.

"There will be cuts in personnel and programs," school Business Administrator Greg Rohrman said Tuesday. "We're not sure yet, we don't have an exact number, but it includes teachers, aides and custodians."

Superintendent Dennis Anderson said in a written release that the cuts were being made because of taxpayer concerns and because "the Department of Education declined our request to ask the taxpayer for funds to offset the state's substantial an unprecedented cuts in state aid."

The district lost more than $333,000 in state aid.

Rohrman said the district has talked about job cuts for years. The district is hoping some retirements will help eliminate the need for eliminating staff.

"We have to let them know by May 15 if we're not going to bring them back," Rohrman said.

Anderson said, "The administration and the board have made additional cuts that we are not totally comfortable making, but we will do all within our power to maintain the outstanding academic program that our community expects from our school."

Even with the cuts, the school tax rate will increase from 25.5 cents per $100 of assessed valuation last year to 26.53 cents.

The school tax bill for a home valued at $300,000 would rise from $765 to $795.90.

The accompanying tax levy will be $6,123,533, up $235,519 from the previous budget year.

"We're looking at staff cuts, eliminating some clubs and sports, and combining certain grades where enrollment will permit, so at some grade levels where we have two classrooms now, next year we will have one," Anderson said.

The school board will next meet at 5:30 p.m. April 13 at Crest Memorial School, 9100 Pacific Ave.

Contact Trudi Gilfillian:

609-463-6716