Northwest ISD is on track to end the 2020-21 fiscal year with a smaller general fund deficit than anticipated.

The district adopted an expected $25.1 million deficit last summer, and current projections forecast the actual deficit will be closer to $15 million.

The district’s food service fund and debt service fund have exceeded expectations as well with surpluses of $603,534 and $7,860,062, respectively.

According to the timeline outlined during the district’s June 14 budget workshop, the board of trustees will meet June 28 to amend the 2020-21 budget to reflect actual outcomes and approve the 2021-22 budget.

Chief Financial Officer Brian Carter said the district’s ongoing goal is to find a way to cut $17.5 million from the current budget and adopt a balanced budget for next year.

Staffing and program reductions are still being worked on. Those reductions will primarily deal with fine arts and athletics, Carter said, and each department has planned to cut $1 million through personnel and nonpersonnel expenditures.

“The only two pieces that are left outstanding, obviously, are the most difficult pieces to manage, because it deals with staff and personnel,” Carter said. “And you need to have retirements and/or resignations in order to make those pieces work.”

The proposed budget for next year, as of June 14, plans for $240 million in revenue and $241,744,814 costs, with a deficit of $1,744,814.