At least four school districts, including Haven and Lindsborg’s Smoky Valley, will close early this spring because of state funding cuts. Many others are delaying spending or freezing hiring. Some may raise local property taxes. Lawrence expects to lose about $1.6 million and may have to repay the state about $500,000 it already spent. Superintendent Rick Doll told Lawrence school board members this week: “You can be assured that we’re not planning to ask you to cut $2 million more out of the budget, so we need to start thinking about the impact that’s going to have on the mill rate.” Also be assured that state lawmakers who approved the funding cuts will criticize local officials for raising taxes. – Phillip Brownlee
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