"We need to be smiling," Margaret Scurlock, custodian of funds for the district, told the Board of Education on Tuesday.
Scurlock’s presentation was part of the board’s first budget hearing, which was held at the Carl Elliott Building in Jasper.
Superintendent Jason Adkins said the figure is an amazing accomplishment for a school district that was millions of dollars in debt in 2010. He said the gains were made thanks to the tough decisions by school officials and the sacrifices of all the district’s staff.
"We're in better shape now than when we had the stimulus money," he said. "In the worst of times, we have made tremendous headway."
According to the presentation, the Walker County Schools will end the 2012 fiscal year with a projected general fund balance of $4.25 million. Scurlock said financial officers expect the balance to be $6.37 million at the end of the 2013 fiscal year.
That figure will be $1.25 million more than the $5.12 million required for the one-month operating fund.
The projected budget for the 2013 fiscal year will include total revenue of $83.06 million. That’s compared to $81.15 million for the 2012 fiscal year.
The revenue for 2013 includes $63.5 million for the general fund, $1.9 million for the capital projects fund (used to fund building projects), and $15.9 million in special revenue, which are funds earmarked for specific programs.
The revenue includes $41.37 million from the state of Alabama, a $1.05 million decrease from 2012’s projected state funds. Local revenue is expected to be at $11.7 million for the 2013 fiscal year, a $1.34 million increase from 2012 projections.
Total expenditures for the school district are projected to be $86 million for the 2013 fiscal year. That’s compared to $79.2 million for the 2012 fiscal year.
The 2013 expenditures include $61.4 million in the general fund, $14.5 million in special revenues and $8.5 million for capital projects.
According to Scurlock’s presentation, 66.58 percent of the total expenditures for the 2013 fiscal year will be put toward salaries and benefits.
That’s compared to 73.32 percent for the 2012 fiscal year.
The Board of Education will hold its second public budget hearing during its regular scheduled meeting at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 13.