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Holloway: Millage increase not likely

June 19, 2012

Holloway

Starkville School District officials will hold a public hearing for the proposed 2012-2013 fiscal year budget 6 p.m. today at the Greensboro Center.

Members of the public will be allowed three minutes each of comment time for questions concerning the budget.

A first glance of the almost-$43 million budget was presented to school board officials June 5, but Comptroller Rob Logan said small changes would occur since the budget is not finalized.

Incoming SSD Superintendent Lewis Holloway said the budget will attempt to balance district needs, including long-term technological and facility plans, without adding an additional millage levy.

The tentative budget presented earlier in the month allocates $42.98 million toward expenses and plans for $43.8 million in revenue. The budget is scaled back from the previous year, expecting a $3.2 million in revenues.

“From what I understand now, we believe millage rate will stay the same,” Holloway said. “We do see a lot of needs in the district and we’re coming across some items where we can be more frugal. We’re figuring out how to prioritize those needs, but we don’t want to do it quickly because we want input from the board, community and our stakeholders.

“If members of the public have insight where we can save money or place more of a (financial) priority, we’re welcome to their comments,” he added.

The board will hold its regular July meeting at 6 p.m. June 26 to adopt its operating budget.

Prior to setting FY 2012-2013’s budget in stone, the school board approved two new learning projects with current and incoming fiscal funding, a move Holloway said was necessary to begin instruction this coming school year. Teachers will begin using Pearson Reading Streets a language arts program for kindergarten through fifth grade, and Singapore Math, third grade-only, next school year at a projected cost of $245,000. Funding allotted for the programs in the upcoming budget will be shifted to cover the impact on the current fiscal year.

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