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18 Positions, Middle School Sports in Budget Limbo PDF Print
Written by Steve Frank   
Tuesday, 10 May 2011 05:54

Making the money work—that the task of the Watauga County Commission in marathon sessions, trying to spread what money will be in the 2011-2012 budget.  In the forefront of many minds is how the schools will fare with state cuts projected at 10% more this year than last year’s lean budget, federal cuts and other monetary impacts on their task.

Asking for an additional $784,000 to help bridge a third of the deficit, Superintendent Marty Hemric’s remarks hit that figure in a number of ways, "If we cannot close the gap on that—if that's added to the $900,000—we're also confidant in saying that we will lose 9 teachers and 9 teacher assistants...a total of 18, plus the strong possibility of middle school athletics."
Commissioner Jim Deal proposed using money from a reduced debt service for the county to help, "From my perspective, once again, I'm looking at what we can additionally do this year to keep teachers and teacher assistants in the classrooms and still hold back money that gives us flexibility next year to face whatever we might be facing next year."
Now commissioners will try to meet the additional money the schools say they need to try to meet the task—even while they deal with their part of $3.2 million fewer dollars than last year.


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