The Northridge Local School District board took its first steps following the failure of the Nov. 2 income tax levy renewal to examine district finances Monday night.

The Northridge Local School District board took its first steps following the failure of the Nov. 2 income tax levy renewal to examine district finances Monday night.

Among actions taken by the board was approval of a new five-year forecast to be submitted to the Ohio Department of Education. Treasurer Jim Hudson said the board was required only to submit forecasts in October and May, but that it was good practice to submit a revised forecast if circumstances changed significantly.

The forecast approved Monday eliminates approximately $1.7-million in annual revenues raised by the 1 percent income tax, which will expire Dec. 31.

Finance committee volunteer Jerry Rambo presented the board with a list of recommended cuts and revenue raisers and said the committee would present additional ideas at upcoming meetings.

Board member Jeff Schrock, liaison with the community-volunteer finance committee, said the committee was working hard.

"The finance committee is taking this very seriously," Schrock said. "They're not pulling any punches. They're still looking at things they will present to the board at the next meeting."

Board president Lee Hatfield said the discussion was the first the board had had since the election.

"We have to do this in open forum," Hatfield said. "This is the first time we've had an opportunity as a board to have a conversation about cuts. Everyone would like this to move alongWe'll invite everybody back to work sessions.

"This is kind of the beginning on our end. Obviously we were hoping not to have this conversation. We have to look at everything."

Rambo suggested a number of items to trim the budget:

School volunteers should pay for their own criminal background checks.

The school should finalize payment for farmland it owns.

All organizations that use school facilities should be charged a fee.

Pay-to-play fees should be increased for all sports and extracurricular activities.

Eliminate all after-school functions.

Shorten school days to state minimums.

Negotiate new vendor contracts.

Allow sponsors and donations.

Reduce the cost of outside attorneys.

Reduce copying costs.

Cut expenses 1 to 2 percent across the board.

Make changes to transportation.

Reduce overtime.

Evaluate healthcare benefit plans to try to reduce costs.

Increase class sizes.

Reduce the number of administrators.

The board scheduled a work session for Thursday, Dec. 9, to discuss budget issues and cuts.

Hudson said the district would lose the income tax revenue for 2011 regardless of whether voters approve a similar income tax on the May ballot or in November, because income tax approved in 2011 would not take effect until 2012.

The board also recognized parent volunteer Jayma Bammerlin for her work in support of the income tax levy.