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Robinson: Livingston Schools Would Be Affected by Sequestration Cuts

The district could see a loss in federal funding

Livingston school officials are under a deadline to submit the 2013-2014 school budget to the county next week with uncertainty whether $85 billion in federal "sequestration" spending cuts will be stopped by Congress before Friday. 

Livingston will learn its state aid figures on Thursday after Gov. Chris Christie delivered his fiscal year 2014 budget address Tuesday afternoon.

According to Steven Robinson, Business Administrator, there would be an affect if federal funds are lost. " It may not be as much as other districts, but Livingston Public Schools could see a loss -- per our estimates -- of approximately 25 percent of our federal funding," said Robinson.

The release of the state aid figures triggers a sequence of events related to the budget process, including the Livingston Board of Education approving the proposed school budget in early March. The budget is due for review to the county next week.

New Jersey could lose nearly $12 million in funding for primary and secondary education if Congress fails to halt the “sequestration” by Friday, according to figures released by the White House. 

Without action from Congress, the sequester would go into effect automatically on March 1, reducing spending by the state in a number of areas, including education, the environment, health, military and law enforcement, the White House said.

"We would be affected," reiterated Robinson.

Funding would be cut to the early childhood education program Head Start, vaccination programs for children and health services for seniors, among other things, and thousands of civilian Department of Defense employees could be furloughed, according to the White House.

The total federal spending cuts under the sequester plan add up to about $1.2 trillion over the next nine years.

Republicans have accused the president of using the impending cuts for political gain.

President Barack Obama's plan asks for increased tax revenues to offset some of the trillion-dollar cuts.

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