While the cost of a quality education is increasing, the county seems to be doing well in funding those costs. During last night’s monthly work session for the Chattooga County Board of Education, Superintendant Dr. Dwight Pullen gave board members a first look at some of the numbers proposed for next year’s school system budget. While the majority of funding comes from the state in the form of QBE money, county sales tax and property tax numbers look promising. The budget figures are based on last year’s numbers with a very conservative tweak, and they indicate that with state funds plus five million dollars ($5,000,000) in projected property taxes and one point seven million dollars ($1,700,000) from the local one percent sales tax, total revenue for the upcoming budget should reach almost twenty-five million dollars ($25,000,000). That might fall just short of expenses, but in such a tight year, the difference should be minimal. And, according to Superintendent Pullen, the budget has set aside money to purchase diesel fuel for buses at a cost of $5.50 per gallon. If there is some relief from high fuel costs then the budget numbers will look even more favorable.
Tom Maxwell – AM 1180