The Alleghany County Board of Commissioners reconvened the
recessed budget meeting from Wednesday, May 31, 2006, on Thursday,
June 1, 2006,at in the Conference Room of the CountyOfficeBuilding, 90 South Main Street, Sparta, NC.
††††††††††† Present:† Chair Eldon Edwards, Vice-Chair Warren
Taylor, Commissioner Sandy Carter Herndon, Commissioner Ken Richardson, CountyManagerDon Adams and Clerk to the Board Karen Evans.††
Commissioner Graylen Blevins and County Attorney Donna Shumate were absent.
Chair Eldon Edwards reconvened the recessed meeting at .
Dr. Jeff Cox, Superintendent, stated that the Board of Education
met on Tuesday to discuss the resolution for the bond referendum.† He further stated that the Board of Education
has decided to ask that the referendum not be put on the November ballot in
order to get revaluation done to see the impact and the tax increase with this
yearís budget.† He talked about the
timing of the referendum and setting it up for failure if they proceed now.† He further talked about pushing it out a
little farther but they havenít changed their mind about the middle school.† He stated that the resolution was tabled
until a later date.† He further stated that
they hoped this would take some of the pressure off during the current budget.
Chair Eldon Edwards and Dr. Cox discussed the elementary
schools wouldnít be updated at this time.
Commissioner Ken Richardson stated his disappointment that
the members of the Board of Education arenít at this meeting.† He talked about the next general election is
in 2008.† He stated that it is difficult
to understand postponing the referendum, and he disagrees with that action.
Dr. Cox stated that it was his understanding that this
meeting was to present the budget and another meeting can be scheduled for both
board to attend, if needed.
A video presentation was shown regarding the Board of
Educationís FY 2006-2007 budget requests including current expense and capital
Commissioner Ken Richardson asked how many of the issues in
the referendum are being addressed in this budget request.
Dr. Cox stated that there are a number of items included in
the budget request but the larger items are still in the referendum.† He gave examples of the GladeCreekElementary School gym floor and the AlleghanyHigh School bleachers.
Commissioner Ken Richardson talked about the safety issues
at GladeCreekElementary School and the leakage problems.† He stated that he canít believe that safety
issues arenít the top priority.
Chair Eldon Edwards asked about prioritizing the capital
Dr. Cox stated that they can once they know how much funding
they will receive.
Karen Leys talked about when a project canít be funded, it
is moved to next yearís request.
CountyManagerDon Adams stated that the total available new
funds are $547,119 and the request is $728,935.†
He talked about the ADM funds and how they could be used to reduce the
shortfall for capital outlay.† He
explained that if both boards agree, $100,000 of ADM funds could be used
leaving approximately $40,000 in the ADM account.† He further explained that action would leave
an $81,816 shortfall for capital expenses.
Dr. Cox stated that their request doesnít include anything
for the PineyCreekElementary School gym.† He talked about the costs of the requested
capital items including requesting half of the bleachers at AlleghanyHigh School this year and the other half next
Commissioner Sandy Carter Herndon and Dr. Cox talked about
these capital requests will complete the air-conditioning at all of the
Commissioner Sandy Carter Herndon commended Dr. Cox on the
budget presentation and stated her appreciation for the consideration of the
Commissioners being in a tough budget year.
CountyManagerDon Adams explained the current expense
request is $473,202 more that the current year, and he is recommending $158,422
leaving a shortfall of $314,780.† He
further explained that the $158,422 covers the uncontrollable costs.† He stated that the costs associated with the
$314,780 are the three new teachers and teacher supplement with benefits.† He asked if the teacher supplement is one of
the most important priorities.
Dr. Cox stated that to him it is.† He talked about the referendum for a middle
school and the additional requested positions for the middle school.
Commissioner Warren Taylor and Dr. Cox talked about the $200
across the Board supplement and attracting new teachers.
CountyManagerDon Adams talked about the new teacher
positions being two for the middle school and an alternative teacher.† He asked for an explanation on the
Dr. Cox explained that is a teacher for the children where
the normal classroom setting isnít working.
Commissioner Warren Taylor, Dr. Cox and Karen Leys talked about
the costs of the supplement being $35,000 plus the benefits.
Commissioner Sandy Carter Herndon and County Manager Don Adams talked about if full funding for
both requests are granted, it would be a 4Ę tax increase.
Dr. Cox explained why the supplement is a priority with
local dollars.† He apologized for the
confusion about this being a joint meeting.
Chair Eldon Edwards stated his appreciation for Dr. Cox
attending this meeting.
Judd Starling invited the Board to come to the schools to
see where the money is being spent.
Dr. Cox talked about summer school has been brought back at
the High School and is starting soon.
The Board of Commissioners and school staff talked about the
drop-out rate, age for drop outs, working with the children in the 6th,
7th, and 8th grades to reduce the drop out rates later,
most drop outs is attributed to attendance and the 5-year drop-out rate, the need
to target the middle-school aged children and the benefits of a ROTC program at
the High School.
CountyManagerDon Adams stated that the meeting notice
today was sent out before the knowledge about the middle school referendum not
being on the ballot.† He talked about Bob
Jessup with Sanford Holshouser Law Firm has been providing free advice
regarding the referendums.† He further
talked about Mr. Jessupís offer of $1,500 for the middle school and $3,000 for
the library for the legal work that is associated with the referendums.† He explained why the middle school was
cheaper because of actually selling the bonds if the referendum passed.† He further explained that now the only
agreement that he is asking for approval on is the $3,000 for the library and
permission to continue with the library referendum.
Chair Eldon Edwards talked about an amount wasnít available
at the meeting when the Commissioners tentatively agreed to the library referendum.
CountyManagerDon Adams stated that $2,000,000 is half of
the needed amount.† He talked about a letter
from the architect regarding the costs.
Commissioner Warren Taylor asked why we are going with a
referendum if bonds arenít going to be sold.
CountyManagerDon Adams explained that it is to let the
people decide on the project.† He further
explained that Mr. Jessup needs to prepare documents for Mondayís meeting if
the Board wishes to proceed.
Commissioner Warren Taylor stated that he sees a couple of
reasons to continue with the library referendum with one being the needs of the
library will be brought to public light.†
He stated that for $3,000 the Board would know the publicsí
comments.† He further stated that he
doesnít think it will hurt anything because the Board isnít committing to spend
any money other than the $3,000 to learn the publicsí opinion on the issue.
Chair Eldon Edwards talked about the need for more information
regarding the proposed referendum.
CountyManagerDon Adams and Chair Eldon Edwards talked
about the total costs are $4,000,000 with $2,000,000 being on the referendum
and the library raising the other $2,000,000.
CountyManagerDon Adams reviewed the referendum process and
deadlines.† He talked about the Board has
three choices on Monday; vote for it, vote against it or not vote at all.† He explained the costs of the facility and
public education is the libraryís responsibility.
Commissioner Sandy Carter Herndon talked about needing
approval for the attorney to prepare documents for Mondayís meeting.
CountyManagerDon Adams agreed and explained the $3,000
Chair Eldon Edwards stated his concern if the referendum
passes and the tax increase associated with the construction of a new library.
The Board talked about reasons to have the referendum
Commissioner Sandy Carter Herndon talked about the library
needs additional space and asking the citizens to make the decision about
Commissioner Warren Taylor talked about needing to have the
documents ready for Monday for the full board to consider it.
CountyManagerDon Adams reminded the Board that Mr. Jessup
has already completed a lot of work for free.
Commissioner Ken Richardson made a motion to give the CountyManager the authority to spend $3,000 to
hire the attorney to prepare the documents for Monday.† Commissioner Warren Taylor seconded the
CountyManagerDon Adams asked for clarification that the
$3,000 is for the entire project and if the referendum idea fails on Monday
then the County will pay for the time spent.
The Board voted on the motion on the floor.† Vote 4:0.
Commissioner Ken Richardson and County Manager Don Adams talked about a joint meeting with
the Board of Education.
Chair Eldon Edwards recessed this meeting until Friday, June
2 at .