The Newnan Times-Herald

Local

Board adopts $222 million school budget


  • By Rebecca Leftwich
  • |
  • Jun. 26, 2019 - 5:40 PM

At a called meeting Tuesday, the Coweta County Board of Education voted to adopt an operational budget of nearly $222 million for the 2020 fiscal year.

It was a second and final vote on the budget for a new fiscal year that starts July 1. The board tentatively approved the budget at its regular June 12 meeting, after a series of budget workshops in May.

Board members voted 6-1 Tuesday to adopt both the 2020 budget and the amended 2019 budget of $289 million – including a general fund budget of $217 million and funding from federal programs like Title I and the Individuals With Disabilities Act (IDEA) – with Linda Menk casting opposing votes for both.

The general fund budget covers school system operations and other expenditures. It is based on revenue estimates, including anticipated state educational funding during the upcoming year and local property tax revenue.

No increase in local property tax rates is anticipated. The school board has maintained an 18.59 mill property tax rate since first setting it in the summer of 2004.

The 2020 budget includes: 

• Maintaining the current student calendar of 180 instructional days, and the current instructional program for students.

• A raise of $3,000 for employees paid on the school system’s certified schedule.

• A 2.5 percent increase in pay for employees paid on the classified schedule.

• Step increases for certified and classified employees, where due.

• Fully covering an increase in the school system’s contributions to the state Teacher Retirement System.

• Additional teaching positions system-wide.

•  An increase in the school system’s matching contributions to the Communities In Schools program.

The 2020 general fund budget is funded principally by state revenues and local property tax revenues, and it anticipates an overall increase in state funding during the coming fiscal year and 4.5 percent growth in the local tax digest.

It also includes the largest portion of funding for instruction and pupil services, maintenance and operation of schools, transportation and other operational costs.

Other components approved by the board as a part of its total FY 2020 budget included $23,781,755 in expenditures from Special Revenue Funds, which accounts for special federal programs such as Title I, federal lunch programs,] and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act; and $55,830,444 in expenditures from Capital Projects Funds, which accounts for construction and other capital expenditures during the year.

School construction is primarily funded by Educational Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (ESPLOST) revenues. Coweta Schools also receive some state funding for construction. The school system has operated debt-free since retiring all outstanding bonds in 2013.

For other budget details, visit the www.cowetaschools.net .