Valdosta Daily Times

Local News

June 10, 2014

City BOE passes budget

VALDOSTA — Valdosta City Schools passed its Fiscal Year 2015 budget Monday night without having to raise taxes or furloughing school employees.

Unanimously approved by the board, the budget has zero furlough days and no millage rate increase for the district. The total estimated revenues are $81,050,090 while the total estimated expenditures are $88,178,128. This puts the system $7,128,039 over on expenditures versus revenues, an expense which is being covered through the system’s fund balance.

More than half of the $7 million, $3.8 million, is in capital-fund projects. In 2012, the board took out bonds to cover these expenses, resulting in no deficit spending thanks to the money set aside for capital projects.

Bob Jones, the school system’s financial director, said, “We have a balanced budget and we still have money in the bank.”

As of July 1, the system has $23,242,902 in its fund balance, which according to the board is close to the state’s legal limit for the highest amount allowed. As of June 30, 2015, the fund balance will be $16,114,863.

The board approved several items during the meeting.

• The board unanimously approved the engagement of the Georgia School Boards Association’s strategic improvement plan. It also approved the Race to the Top Merit Bonus Pay, which is a three-tiered plan for issuing bonus pay for teachers and administrators meeting the top standards in implementation.

• Continuing work toward the completion of the new Valdosta High School, the board voted on a request for proposal for a construction manager calendar. The board will vote for a construction manager on Aug. 25, according to the calendar. All proposals are due by July 31.

• The board approved the continuation of the Valdosta/Lowndes Family Connection FY15 fiscal agent contract. All of the funds for this, $45,000, are supplied by the state.

• The final two items approved by the board were the purchase of a new 12-passenger school nutrition plan van and the request to move two buses to surplus. The board approved the purchase of a 2014 Ford E350 XLT Super Duty Wagon for $28,196 (with trade-in of the 2006 Caravan) from Langdale Ford. The two buses approved for change to surplus are a 1991 Bluebird bus with 171,988 miles and a 1996 International bus with 120,670 miles.

• The school board heard the first reading of Policies IFBG and JCDAF. IFBG focuses on acceptable Internet use. The policy changes stress cyber safety and the procedures for reporting abuse. It would change the length of storage time from system emails from seven years to 90 days. JCDAF focuses on the use of electronic devices by students. The policy changes discussed include a signed Bring Your Own Device agreement for a student to use a device on campus.

There were several concerns from the board about the legalities and legal ramifications of changing the email storage to such a short amount of time. The board will vote on this matter at a later meeting.

• In addition to hearing policy and financial business, the board heard several reports on student successes. The board reviewed the system’s CRCT scores as well as heard presentation from VHS’s AVID Program, all of which showed excellent numbers for the system.

• The meeting concluded with public participation from Karen Noll, a Valdosta system parent concerned about the Scintilla Charter Academy possibly coming to Valdosta. She shared several concerns including the Academy’s lack of transportation for students and its use of citizens’ tax dollars. She urged the board to reject the charter proposal.

Text Only
Local News
  • Cardiovascular Surgeons.jpg SGMC hires three cardiovascular surgeons

    South Georgia Medical Center has hired three cardiovascular surgeons, according to the hospital Wednesday.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Moody firefighter 2.jpg Moody firefighter feeds burning passion for food

    He can bust down a burning door and save lives from a flaming inferno. If the kitchen survives, he might whip up some elegant blackened salmon.

    July 31, 2014 3 Photos

  • vpd accreditation.jpg VPD receives national reaccreditation

    The Valdosta Police Department received reaccreditation from the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies and is ready to file for accreditation for the regional crime lab.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Fussell Tire & Service to expand into new facility

    An existing business will open a new facility and expand its operations, according to the Valdosta-Lowndes County Development Authority Wednesday.

    July 31, 2014

  • Brown Johnson Solis Cardiovascular Surgeons.jpeg Cardiac, Vascular, Thoracic & Endovascular Surgeons Join South Georgia Medical Center

    The three surgeons will operate a full-time medical practice and professional office named the SGMC CardioVascular Institute.  The medical office, which is located in Suite 230 of the Professional Building which is adjacent to SGMC, will be open 8am to 5pm Monday through Friday.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • 140729-Gas_Leak002.jpg Roadway closed after second gas line break

    For a second day in a row, workers from Valdosta’s Utilities Department struck a natural gas service line causing a leak that shut down a portion of Forrest Street, officials said.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • dump truck arrest photo.jpg Deputies nab stolen dump truck suspects

    The search for suspected dump truck thieves ended Tuesday afternoon with the arrest of two men in the same area officials searched extensively Monday.

    July 30, 2014 2 Photos

  • Bears sighted on Baytree

    A pair of bear sightings along Baytree Road this week could indicate a growing black bear population in Lowndes County.

    July 30, 2014

  • Johnson family files second suit against school

    Two months after filing a civil suit against Lowndes County Schools, Kendrick Johnson’s parents have filed a second suit against the school system which again claims that negligence and bullying led to their son’s death.

    July 30, 2014

  • Teachers Harvest

    With students and teachers returning to the classroom in the coming days, the need for school supplies is at the top of numerous priority lists. For teachers, this often means spending their money to ensure classrooms are fully stocked.

    July 30, 2014

Top News

Do you agree with the millage rate increases?

Yes. We need to maintain services
No. Services should have been cut.
     View Results