School board budget looks good for next year

Director of Finance for the Shelby County Schools Jim Davis spoke reassuring words regarding the upcoming 2003 fiscal year budget.

&uot;Financially, it appears at this point in time, we’re going to make this year and next year. And if there is proration, we have a plan to deal with it.&uot;

Davis presented a 2003 draft budget report to the Shelby County Board of Education during its Tuesday, June 4 meeting.

According to Davis, projected revenues will be some $122.5 million while projected expenses will be some $123.9 million, less another $2.4 million in other fund uses (transfers out to schools) for a negative balance of some $3.8 million.

However, he said, the Shelby County Board of Education will carry over some $4.8 million in completely uncommitted funds which will result in a positive balance of a little more than $1 million.

Some $3.1 million in capital projects funds for 2003, he said, would be used as a hedge against proration.

At the board’s May 14 meeting, Davis had reported that the school system will need to hire 79 new teachers in 2003 at an estimated cost of $3.6 million just to keep up with growth. And he said that estimate included a 3 percent pay raise approved by the state.

According to Davis, that $3.6 million is also included in the 2003 draft budget’s projected expenditures.

While Davis said Shelby County Schools will need the 79 new teachers, he said the state Department of Education is only projecting an allocation of 45.44 teacher units (teachers).

And of the $81.4 million expense associated with those units, the state is projecting it will fund only $69.1 million,

leaving Shelby County Schools a $13.3 million local fund burden