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Troup County Board of Education set to vote on $99.2M budget

Troup County Board of Education is set on Thursday to approve an annual budget of $99,196,194.

The upcoming year’s budget shows about a $4.2 million increase over last year due to less being money cut from the state’s austerity funding to the local school system.

The budget currently shows a deficit of about $750,000 between expenses and revenue, which would come from the school system’s reserve. School system CFO Byron Jones said that the budget does not reflect the one-time revenue of $1 million expected this summer from the sale of the former West Side Magnet School building to LaGrange College, which would offset the need to dip into the reserve.

Jones and school system Superintendent Cole Pugh previously noted that part of the state funds the school system has received are earmarked for additional insurance increases and payments into teacher retirement funds. The state also had requested last year the use of state funds to eliminate furlough days and step increases in pay for eligible teachers, which the system deferred due to a shortage in funds.

The system does plan to follow through with those requests this year, which is expected to use $1 million for each request, and it will have to document those expenses to the state, Jones previously said.

Other use of funds will go toward restoring positions and training previously cut from the system in recent years. Included is adding an estimated $703,000 for additional elementary staff, $250,000 for additional middle and high school staff and $238,100 for staff development for training teachers and staff. Also, about $171,598 would go toward restoring full-time employees who have been cut to 35 hours per week to 40-hour work weeks.

The Board of Education on Thursday also is expected to set three public hearings for its millage rate. The Board of Education is not anticipating a millage rate increase, but would still be required to host hearings if it chooses not to roll back the rate due to increases in property tax revenue.

The proposed millage rate public hearing dates are:

• July 9, 10 a.m. at Hogansville Elementary School, 611 E. Main St.

• July 9, 6 p.m. at West Point Elementary School, 1701 E. 12th St.

• July 16, 6:30 p.m. at the Administrative Services Center, 100 N. Davis Road, building C.