STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA                             )                    OFFICE OF THE COMMISSIONERS

                                                                        )                    STOKES COUNTY GOVERNMENT

COUNTY OF STOKES                                         )                    DANBURY, NORTH CAROLINA

                                                                        )                    JUNE 7, 2004

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 


The Board of Commissioners of the County of Stokes, State of North Carolina, met for a scheduled budget work session for the proposed Fiscal Year 2004/05 County Budget in the Council Chambers of the Administrative Building, located in Danbury, North Carolina, on Monday, June 7, 2004, at 6:00 pm with the following members present:

 

                                    Chairman Sandy McHugh

                                    Vice-Chairman John Turpin

                                    Commissioner Howard Mabe

                                    Commissioner Leon Inman

                                    Commissioner Joe Turpin

 

                                    County Manager Richard Morris

                                    County Attorney Jonathan Jordan

                                    Darlene Bullins, Clerk to the Board

 

Others in Attendance:

Finance Director Julia Edwards

Assistant Finance Director Lisa Lankford

Mr. Jack Veit- Stokes Intern

 

Chairman McHugh called the meeting to order.

 

County Attorney Jonathan Jordan delivered the invocation.         

 

GENERAL GOVERNMENT-GOVERNING BODY-PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

 

Chairman McHugh opened the meeting by inviting the citizens in attendance to join the Board with the Pledge of Allegiance.

 

STOKES COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION

 

The following members were in attendance representing Stokes County Schools:

 

 

                                    Vice Chairman Ty Boles

                                    Yvonne Rutledge, School Board Member

                                    Ernest Lankford, School Board Member

                                    Sonya Cox, School Board Member

                                    Dr. Larry Cartner, School Superintendent

                                    Finance Director Lynette Moore

 

Schools-Capital Outlay

 

The Stokes County Board of Education and Stokes County Board of Commissioners began the Budget Work Session with the discussion of Capital Outlay.

 

The following topics were discussed:

 

            Roofing Projects:

            North Stokes High School “S” Building (metal)

            London Elementary School Gym (metal)

            Nancy Reynolds Elementary School Gym (rubber)

Pine Hall Elementary School Gym/Media Center/Office Area (metal)

South Stokes High School Band Building (metal)

South Stokes High School “F” Building (metal)

12 total roofs are in need of repairing – six will be remaining

 

Renovations – Central Office

Chairman McHugh requested information concerning recent renovations at the

            Central Office Building in Danbury, cost of renovations, cost of furniture,

            and funding source in current school budget.

 

            Dr. Cartner noted the need for renovations due to following items:

            space issue, departmental needs, health and safety issues-flooding, wiring,

            lightning, asbestos, sidewalks, paint, etc.

 

            Possible Additional School Nurse

Possibility of 100 additional school nurses for the State- will be allocated per ADM            

Pine Hall Elementary School Mandated Wastewater System Improvements

Waste having to be trucked out most of the year

Styrofoam products being used most of the year

 

Schools – Current Expense

           

The Stokes County Board of Education and Stokes County Board of Commissioners discussed Current Expense.

 

 

             Dr. Cartner presented handouts and spoke concerning the following:

 

            Projected Overall Funding Loss

            Local - $380,574

            State -  $247,500

            Federal -$70,000

            Total  - $698,074

 

            Local Funding Comparison (compares counties similar to Stokes)

(chart comparing ADM rank, # of students, total teachers, total locally, etc.)

 

Loss of State Positions

Lost 6 teaching positions in planning allotment for 2004/05

Lost 3.5 positions in December 2003

Lost 1 support position (guidance, speech, nurses) in December 2003

Total Loss of 10.5 state positions for school year 2004-05

 

Local Positions: History and Need

200 more students than 5 years ago and 18 fewer positions

Request four additional classroom positions in local budget

Request one additional school nurse in local budget

·         Currently have 3 positions to serve 7408 students

·         2 are funded through school funds and 1 through the Health Dept.

Request one maintenance position

·         1.1 million square feet and slightly less than 700 acres maintained by

13 maintenance employees and 1 supervisor

·         Preventive Maintenance

 

School Resource Officers ($205,892) (Excludes Walnut Cove)

Redirecting $123,900 funded through school budget for SRO Officers to

be paid by local government to be used in the classroom

 

Increased Employee Costs

State mandated increases in retirement (+2.35%) and hospitalization (+125.00 per employee)

Costs for providing required P&S endorsements for 99 bus drivers

 

Central Office Staff

            Eliminated one senior level position

            One clerical addition to meet FSLA requirements

            Three employees handle HR for functions for 1100 employees

            Four and one half clerical handle finances, benefits, and insurance –1100 employees

            Two employees handle entire Exceptional Children Program-over 1000 students

            One employee directs Technology Prog. for–21 sites, 1100 employees, 7408 students

One employee handles required SIMS Management-18 schools, 7408 students

Three instructional directors (elementary, middle, high)

One clerical handles all curricular issues for 18 schools and 7408 students

Three employees conduct the child nutrition program –7408 students

One receptionist handles student records

One administration assistant to the Board of Education/Superintendent

One Finance Officer

Local positions – Technology and SIMS

 

Low Wealth Funding

In 2003-04, the local funding level of Stokes County is within $1.39 of

affecting the loss of Low Wealth Funding-estimated $1.146

 

Construction Needs

Use of $360,000 of State funding for maintenance roofing needs

Need to use State funding for school construction and renovation

 

Remove 10% Cap for Transfer of Funds

Removal of this cap will indicate a growing trust and will allow the school

system to leverage greater financial flexibility in moving funds for students needs

 

Purpose and Function

The Board of Education needs the flexibility to budget according to needs.

Dr. Cartner requested the Board of Education be allowed to budget the entire local allotment to purpose and function as needed.

 

Condition of Building

Space Issue

Renovations – departmental and recruiting of personnel

Health and Safety Issues

 

Local Teaching Positions

 

Local

 

Teaching

 

Positions

 

Fiscal Year

                     Number

1999/2000

38.84

2000/2001

30.84

2001/2002

22

2002/2003

20

2003/2004

20

2004/2005-Requested

24

 

Other items:

Critical Need of Full Funding; Restricted funding

Funding formula changed from last year

The Boards discussed other issues pertaining to:

 

Redrawing of school lines

Retaining qualified personnel

Mobile units at schools – Mt. Olive 17 units

Student Population

All Federal funding tied together- must take all or nothing

Increased transportation cost

Accountability of funding being expensed

Detailed information concerning the Low Wealth Funding

 

Chairman McHugh requested the following information:

Out of the $49 million in funding, what % goes into the Classroom

 for teachers, teacher benefits, supplies, etc?

 

Commissioner Joe Turpin requested where the additional increase

 of funding is being expensed?

 

Members of the Board of Education noted the following:

 

Ty Boles

Central office renovations needed for space

Local funding in Stokes News inadequate

Recruitment of qualified teachers

Maintaining qualified teachers

Impact of State cuts

Main purpose- education of children

School Start Date Bill-takes 10 days away-possibly having to use substitutes

to allow Teachers to acquire continuing education credits

 

Yvonne Rutledge

Redrawing lines would be domino effect –possibly increases all schools

No additional space in other schools for redrawing of the lines

Complex budget

 

Ernest Lankford

Federal funding – estimate $3million for upcoming fiscal year

The current increase needed for the schools

 

Sonya Cox

Current overcrowding in Schools

Redrawing of school lines – need for new schools

Possibility of more jobs for Reynolds, which could increase attendance

Mobile unit- safety issues

Retaining and Recruiting qualified teachers

Need for competitive salaries and benefits for recruiting and retaining qualified      

teachers

 

Chairman McHugh noted that the Board of Education has the option to request that funding can be moved to different funding sources before the budget is adopted; the need for building up the fund balance in order to obtain a good bond rating when new schools are able to be built; and the other needs for the citizens of Stokes County.

 

Board Member Yvonne Rutledge requested the Board be allowed to recalculate the $43 million final budget total that included estimates from federal and state funding.

 

Chairman McHugh noted that the proposed budget includes $416,000 more general funding than last year; school’s unreserved fund balance estimated $618,000; and over $1 million in ADM funding.

 

Chairman McHugh reiterated that after the budget is adopted by the County, the Board of Education can submit changes for purpose and functions all at one time to the County.

 

Dr. Cartner requested the Board be given a dollar amount of funding from the County in order to budget by purpose and function.   Dr. Cartner requested that the records reflect that he requested full funding of the Stokes County Board of Education’s request.

 

Vice Chairman John Turpin requested information concerning Board Members being employed with organizations that the school system contracts with for professional services. 

 

Vice Chairman John Turpin noted the conflict of interest in a school board member being paid by the school board in their private job which is contracted with Stokes County Schools.

 

Dr. Cartner stated that both the school board attorney and the North Carolina School Board Association Attorney, both confirmed that the school contracts with a Company that the Board member happens to be an employee there.  The School Board does not contract with the Board member.  Dr. Cartner noted that the Board Member abstained from the voting of that contract.

 

Vice Chairman John Turpin and Commissioner Joe Turpin noted individuals that are graduating highs schools and even community college that don’t have the basic spelling and writing skills.

 

There being no further business to come before the Board, Vice Chairman John Turpin moved to adjourn the budget work session. 

 

Commissioner Joe Turpin seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

 

_________________________                                  _____________________________

Darlene Bullins                                                      Sandy McHugh

Clerk to the Board                                                  Chairman