Trustees have formally approved the Natrona County School District’s budget for the next fiscal year.

Trustees say the nearly $293 million budget for fiscal year 2014 contains money for needed staffing increases and the continuation of several construction projects throughout the district’s geographical footprint.

District treasurer Audrey Cotherman says several considerations were made prior to the budget’s approval.

“The first consideration was to spend as much money as possible on the students, the second was to try to be supportive of the teachers and their continuing development, the third was to try to spend the money as efficiently as possible,” Cotherman said.

The fiscal year 2014 budget shows a five percent increase compared to the fiscal year 2013 budget.

The general fund increased by 3.5 percent. Supt. Steve Hopkins says the increase takes into account several things, including the increasing student population.

Capital projects increased three percent. Hopkins says that’s due to several large construction projects that are underway throughout the district.

Special revenue decreased 1.5 percent following the expiration of certain one-time grants.

The full budget can be viewed at the Natrona County School District’s website.