How They Sold $17-Plus Million Spending Hike as $10 Million Cut

A pitch mailed by the Kalamazoo Public Schools to a local nonprofit asking for help passing a millage hike on May 5 included the following:

“For many years, the state has underfunded public education, and local school districts have needed to make significant budget cuts as a result.” The letter also stated that Kalamazoo Public Schools had cut spending by about $10 million in the last five years.

The special education tax hike squeaked through with just 51 percent of the votes.

ForTheRecord says: According to the Kalamazoo Public Schools’ audited financial reports, its costs for all “governmental activities” – (the overall budget) increased in the last five years from $141.6 million in 2009 to $159.1 million in 2014.