School Finance

Incentive Funds for Districts Participating in Multidistrict Cooperatives

Monday, April 30, 2012, 2:35 pm

Senate Bill 329 and House Bill 2 appropriated $2 million for the biennium for one-time payments to school districts participating in multidistrict cooperatives as of December 31, 2012.  Payments will be allocated to districts based on the proration of each district’s FY2013 general fund BASE budget to the total BASE budgets for all districts participating in multidistrict cooperatives.

A district must be participating in a multidistrict cooperative in FY2013 in order to be eligible for a portion of the $2 million appropriation. The prime applicant (prime agency) of the cooperative must send a copy of the finalized multidistrict agreement and the name of each participating district to the Office of Public Instruction (OPI). Please send this information to Debbie Casey, OPI School Finance Division, P.O. Box 202501, Helena, MT 59620-2501. School districts have until December 31, 2012 to submit the required paperwork.

The OPI will make a partial preliminary payment to school districts in mid to late August 2012 based on the written agreements it receives as of July 31, 2012.  After the December 31, 2012 deadline, OPI will recalculate the final distribution and send final payments to all school districts eligible for the incentive funding.

OPI has posted a document containing answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs) about multidistrict cooperatives, including guidance for the accounting treatment and reporting of activity related to multidistrict cooperatives on the annual Trustees Financial Summary.  The document is located at this link:

For more information, contact Janelle Mickelson, 406-444-3249