THE HUNTER REPORT
BOE $1MILLION DEFICIT OPERATING BUDGET GETS THUMBS UP
HOW TO PAY FOR BIG SHORTFALL?
BY PAT HUNTER
At Thursday's May 9th board meeting, Chairman Bobby Johnson turned agenda item "IX. Budget Consideration" to Jason Vance, director of schools. “We have been discussing the budget for just a short while and it was presented at the board workshop and it would be my recommendation to approve the budget” and how to proceed with County Commission said director of schools Jason Vance.
Board member Craig Simon motioned to approve the budget which was simultaneously seconded by board member Gary Ubben and William Jenkins. “Several of us” laughed Gary Ubben.
Board member Jeremy Buckles spoke about several concerns. One is pay raises he commented. “I know that its only $100 per month for each board member but I do think that it sends the wrong message to the community right now” with the economic times and tight budget that we already have. Jeremy Buckles spoke about meeting with director Jason Vance over the budget and he felt that the budget could be trimmed back to the original budget of $670,000 and still give teachers and other employees pay raises.
Vice Chairman Leroy Tate felt that “computers and stuff” was needed for future testing and that much of the budget request was not re-occurring money.
When all was said and done, the Loudon County Board of Education approved the $1 Million Shortfall FY 13-14 Operating Budget by a margin of eight (8) YES and two (2) NO's :
Yes: Chairman Bobby Johnson Jr. (Lenoir City), Vice Chairman Leroy Tate (Philadelphia), Kenny Ridings (Loudon), William Jenkins (Lenoir City), Ric Best (Highland Park), Phil Moffett (Greenback), Gary Ubben (Eaton- Harrison Rd.) and Craig Simon (Tellico Village).
No: Jeremy Buckles (Eaton-Harrison Rd.,) and Scott Newman (Loudon).