BOE hears tentative budget

Published 7:49 pm Friday, May 15, 2015

In what Decatur County School superintendent Dr. Fred Rayfield called “the best set of numbers I have seen in 10 years,” the Decatur County Board of Education was presented with a tentative 2016 fiscal year budget Thursday night.

The proposed budget would leave the system with a $5.47 million ending fund balance and includes, the second consecutive year, no furlough days for faculty and staff. For the first time in several years, this budget includes revenues that exceed expenses and will not cause the system to make up any shortfalls from fund balance reserves.

The budget calls for total general fund revenues of $39.38 million and total general fund expenses of $39.30 million.

Email newsletter signup

Of the total revenues, 64 percent, or $25.05 million will come from the State of Georgia allocations and 36 percent, of $14.04 million will come from local property taxes.

System revenues are expected to increase by $1.19 million over the previous year’s budget. The vast majority of the increase, $1.12 million, is a result of the State of Georgia reducing the level of austerity cuts to Quality Basic Education (QBE) funding.

While revenues are expected to increase, the system will also realize an increase in expenses of $867,000.

According to Tim Matthews, system Chief Financial Officer, an increase in employee health insurance premiums, an increase teacher retirement payments, and a much-needed cash allocation to capital outlay projects make up the majority of the increase in general fund expenses.

Employee salaries and benefits are expected to make up 87 percent, or $34.02 million, of the total expense budget.