Board of Education adopts significant budget revisions

Published 6:58 pm Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Acting under directions from the Beaufort County Board of Education, Interim Superintendent Mark Doane and Finance Director Willie Mack Carawan presented a plan during the board’s Tuesday meeting that would reduce the school system’s anticipated fund balance appropriation for the 2018-19 fiscal year from $508,479 to $272,970.

“This is a working number,” Doane told the board. “I’m sure there are many more changes I’ll have to come back with during the year. I’m happy to say that last year, you approved $350,000 and we were able to only use $200,000.”

Expenses cut include the following:

  • Transportation of pupils — By increasing the school system’s transportation efficiency, Doane and Carawan estimate that BCS could save as much as $100,000 during the course of the coming school year. In order to do so, BCS would need to reduce driver time by 10 minutes each day and reduce its total mileage driven by 10,000 miles. Improved efficiency would in turn lead to more state funding for transportation.
  • Plant Operations — The plan deducts $50,000 in capital improvements previously budgeted to be paid for from the school system’s maintenance budget.
  • Other items — Further deductions include innovative classroom furniture, Board of Education expenses, money no longer needed for accreditations, discretionary expenses and salary reimbursements that will not reoccur this budget year.

The board passed the revisions 6-1, with those in attendance. Board Member Terry Williams was the one dissenting vote, citing concerns about adding new positions in the budget at a time when the school system has lost 11 teaching positions due to state and federal funding.

The Board of Education approved a plan to explore possible sales of vehicles in the school system’s motor pool. This would not include cars, vans and trucks assigned to child nutrition, transportation, maintenance and technology departments.