The financial outlook for Reynoldsburg City Schools continues to be stable and steady, with district revenues outpacing expenditures by 10 percent or more, Treasurer Tammy Miller said.

The new five-year financial forecast shows the district will end this fiscal year with more than $30 million left in the general fund, equating to 159 days of operating cash.

"Even though expenditures begin to outpace revenues in fiscal year 2020, the cash reserves will enable the board to delay the need for an operating levy and allow time to adjust expenditures as necessary," Miller said.

She said the district has been "very diligent" in building up a cash balance and putting money in reserve.

"We set aside funds for future expenditures so we have balances that will fund a number of capital projects, bus purchases and technology for several years," she said.

The technology fund totals $6.3 million, which should pay for technology purchases through fiscal year 2022, based on the current technology budget, she said.

The capital projects fund totals $3.4 million and the bus purchase fund is at $2.8 million; the latter is enough to pay for bus purchases through fiscal year 2025, Miller said.

She said the forecast includes a $500,000 transfer to the technology fund every year, starting in fiscal year 2019.

The forecast, which is updated every May and every October, showed actual revenue for fiscal year 2017 (ending in June) at $76,109,204. Expenses were $69,364,409.

Projected revenue for fiscal year 2018 is $78,540,029, with expenses expected to be about $74,177,671.

Because of a carryover cash balance, Miller said the fund balance next year is projected to be $34,484,325.

Miller credits open enrollment as continuing to boost the district's bottom line.

"Open enrollment revenues are estimated at $4.2 million in 2018," she said.

The district has about 700 open-enrollment students from other school districts.

Unfunded mandates from the state also affect the district's bottom line, however, board President Joe Begeny said.

"The reason we have to put aside more and more technology funds is the unfunded state mandate for testing," he said. "A few years ago, the state decided that all testing must be done online and that the district can pay for it themselves."

The district also has to pay for another state mandate -- College Credit Plus -- which allows students to take college courses while still in high school.

Miller said College Credit Plus expenses reached $487,186 last year and are estimated to jump to $701,905 next year because the district added courses from two new colleges and more students.

That amount is projected to be more than $1 million by fiscal year 2022.

She said it is hard to accurately estimate those future expenses because they depend on the number of students who opt to take the courses.

"These are rough estimates, however, because there is not enough historical data to provide reliable trends," she said.

pwillis@thisweeknews.com

@PamelaThisWeek