Margaret Scurlock, financial officer for the county schools, presented the budget for the fiscal year 2011, which has a projected ending fund balance of $22,000. The total funds for the year are $88.9 million. Scurlock said the district’s general fund makes up 70 percent of the money or $61.7 million.
Government special revenue, such as grants, are estimated at $21.7 million. Scurlock reminded the board that the $9.4 million in federal funds the district received over the last two years may not be present in the next budget. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 contributed $7.7 million of those funds while $1.6 million came from the Education Jobs Fund.
“We don’t know that we will have that money in 2012 unless the legislature or congress does something,” she said.
The County School System’s capital projects are at 3.8 million for the fiscal year 2011.
Scurlock also said the school district will need to place $5 million in its one-month operational funds or reserve funds, which have been depleted in the last few years.
“Right now we have used everything in our savings account, but that is reasonable given the economy we have,” she said.
Scurlock said sales taxes are expected to create $9.9 million for the school district in the fiscal year 2011. This is down from the last budget, which was $10.2 million. Funds from sales taxes peaked a few years ago at $11.7 million, she said.
The budget also states the County School System will receive $4.6 million in ad volerum or property taxes, Scurlock said.
She said, given the worldwide economic climate, she believes the school district’s budget is good.
When asked if she expects more proration from the state, she said “I have a gut feeling it’s coming.”
During the meeting, the board also heard a public comment from Parrish Mayor Wayne Gross in which he requested the board lease property near Parrish Elementary School to the town. He said city officials hope to use the land for some form of community recreation.
The Board of Education also went into executive session during the meeting. County School System attorney Russ Robertson said the closed meeting was justified by Alabama law.
However, the topic of discussion was never stated.
In other business the board approved:
•An amendment of $23,000 to the school district’s Head Start program. Rosemary Hataway, director of Head Start, said the funds will go to technology enhancements for the program.
•The renewal of three volunteer coaches from Oakman High School and two from Carbon Hill Elementary/Junior High School.
•The hiring of six new volunteer coaches at Parrish High School.