Allen balances challenging budgets

Our city faces challenging budgets, just as our schools did up to a couple of years ago. Sheila Allen has proven experience in balancing challenging budgets.

From 2008 to 2012 she and her colleagues balanced successive annual Davis school district budgets — with millions of dollars in reduced funds coming from the state — through a combination of strategies, including staff reductions, cuts in employee pay, strategic use of reserve funds and school parcel taxes.

She saw to it that administrators took no less in pay cuts than other district staff. At every point along the difficult way she engaged parents, employees and stakeholders for ideas, discussion and feedback.

After closing Valley Oak Elementary, which she opposed in a losing vote, the school board was considering closing Emerson Junior High because of declining enrollments. She knew this community would not accept another school closure, but the district needed a better alternative.

At that moment she suggested opening up a junior high component of Da Vinci Charter Academy at the Emerson campus. It was a solution that now provides stable and balanced enrollment among all of the junior high campuses and provides additional school choices for parents.

The Davis City Council needs Sheila Allen’s determination, experience, creativity and voice in the mix. She finds solutions that work. Please vote for her as one of your City Council candidates.

Hiram Jackson

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