Fayette School Board leaning toward one-percent sales tax idea

Tue, 07/22/2008 - 9:43am
By: Ben Nelms

Fayette School Board held a called meeting Monday night to discuss the idea of placing a one-percent local option sales tax on the November ballot. If they reach agreement and if voters approve the measure, it is expected to generate $100-115 million in revenues the board said would meet a variety of needs and reduce the debt service millage rate by .83 mills in 2010.

Board members looked favorably on the prospect of raising funds for technology, debt service, security, textbook purchases, facility improvements and bus purchases.

Some on the board were less positive about including a $10 million joint venture aquatic facility on the referendum.

By law, one-percent sales tax initiatives can run for a maximum of five years. The board will continue its discussion of the measure at the July 28 meeting.

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Submitted by 30YearResident on Wed, 07/23/2008 - 10:47pm.

It's time the BoE figured out how to properly manage the money they already receive. We vote in a bunch of former schoolteachers and bored housewives to manage tens of millions of dollars of taxpayer monies. so we deserve most of this. But I know, "It's for the children."

The one thing they understand is that they don't have to manage the money they receive... they can blow it, and then use the power of the government to generate more by raising taxes in some fashion. But it's time we said no.

Nearly 75 cents out of every property tax dollar we pay goes to the school board.... Our school millage rate is already (and has been) the maximum allowed by state. The BoE needs to learn to manage what they receive by reduce unnecessary expenses and stop blowing money on land speculation and expensive office furniture.

Did you realize that department heads are penalized if they don't spend all the money in their budget? They're penalized by having their budget cut the next year because they have funds left over. So at the end of a school year, they go out and spend the remaining.

I believe they should be recognized for being frugal, not penalized.

The BoE are allowing the administrators run amuck and they need to rein them in.

Submitted by swmbo on Wed, 07/23/2008 - 11:52pm.

Governor Purdue had on his Sonny-doo list a plan to float a test balloon for vouchers. So, he signed a law to allow parents of special needs children to get vouchers for their children's education. Problem is that he waited until the next school year's budget and the special ed resources/teachers had already been allocated according to a certain number of special ed students attending. There was no time to adjust and some parents took the voucher and left the school system.

The result was that the FCBOE had to refund $300,000 to the State for those vouchers. Bear in mind, schools like Woodward don't accept vouchers. So, who knows what kind of education those kids actually got. But, the point is that our idiot governor created the short-fall. Thank God SB 458 didn't go through or who knows how much more of the budgeted money the State would have made us return.

If you and I are always in agreement, one of us is likely armed and dangerous.

Submitted by darwin on Tue, 07/22/2008 - 12:27pm.

Each year the state cuts funding for schools. As I see it, the board of education has 2 options: raise property taxes, or increase sale's tax. I think its time that people who rent or live in apartments have an opportunity to help fund their kid's educations along with the rest of us. How about the thousands of people from outside our county that drive through our towns and might buy something? Let’s let them contribute as well. If the board of education does not adequate funds through sales tax, then the home owners will have to pay the entire tab through higher real estate taxes. I say, let everyone contribute and reduce the burden on the home owners.

Submitted by head_ragg on Tue, 07/22/2008 - 12:37pm.

The point is...we don't..have to pay. They messed up and put schools in the middle of no where, closed one, bought 100 acres to flip. At some point, enough is enough. I do not think people are going to vote for it because a couple of the board, in my eyes, have been irresponsible. We gave them money already and we are now Land Barons! That wasn't what some of us had in mind.

What is adequate? If you have people that want to invest in things unrelated to our kids education, there is never going to be an adequate amount of money.

Some people want to make a name for themselves, and they are indeed as someone said, would be, self promoting career politicians.

Submitted by head_ragg on Tue, 07/22/2008 - 11:30am.

Why did we not see this information ...BEFORE... the election?

Before they get any more money from us, there needs to be better accountability on the expenditures, location of schools, etc.

I thought all my tax dollars were to go to educate a children. Did they learn nothing with the 100 acres in the middle of no where they were going to sell to developers to fill up the school?

My tax dollars are not bankrolling the entrepreneurial learning curve for BOE.

I think they should keep it simple. Till they unload the 100 acres and clean up some of their other boo boos, no more money for anything else.
I certainly would never support an aquatic center to the tune of $10 million dollars. Where are they gonna build it? Oh let me guess. Clayton county!

First they flittered as land developers, now they want to try aquatics...No

they have never appologized for their last fiasco.

Submitted by heatjam on Tue, 07/22/2008 - 1:05pm.

This has been in the plans for a long time. If I am correct it would be near Cleveland E.S. along with a performing Arts Center. I, personally, am not opposed to that. I am opposed, however, to how they have managed their finances as of late...the whole EFES to Inman comes to mind. Can we say huge fuel costs?? What are they doing with East Fayette this year anyway?

The sad thing is that this Splost will probably pass and we have only ourselves to blame since all of the board members were reelected.

mother hen's picture
Submitted by mother hen on Tue, 07/22/2008 - 11:48am.

I doubt this issue popped up unexpectedly after the election. I wish I had known about the meeting, because I'd love to hear the rationale behind the aquatic center!

Submitted by wheeljc on Tue, 07/22/2008 - 11:47am.

Sure did not take them long following July 15 did it? But, the voters voted for 'more of the same', and the BOE certainly did not waste a nano second in giving us 'more of the same'! Will be very interesting to see the No Child Left Behind testing results this week. Will see if the BOE was asleep at the switch on their primary responsibilities while they dabbled in 'development'.

Head_ragg, think your comment regarding the aquatic center is right on target. My guess is that this was a trial balloon to see if the public was asleep, and if so, they would try to slip that through!

Hope that one of these days we will learn a lesson. If you want management is a system, get managers -- NOT FULL TIME POLITICIANS!

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