The Chattooga County Board of Education approved its tentative 2017 budget at its regular monthly meeting last week.
The documents showed that the estimated revenue is $23,358,537 as compared to $22,134,591 in 2016. Expenditures approved were a total of $25,031,405.08 as compared to $23,297,119.91 - an almost $2-million increase from 2016.
The system was anticipating collecting $16,116,537 from state QBE funds; $1,580,000 from Local Option Sales Tax funds and $4,700,000 from property taxes.
Largest expenditure items were $15,597,076.67 in instruction; $2,879,185.72 for maintenance; $1,734,891.64 for school administration and $1,365,849.18 for transportation.
“Over the past few years we are spending more money than we are taking in,” School Superintendent Jimmy Lenderman said about the budget. “We are doing that based on the funding that we have been setting aside the past few years for certain projects.”
He said he has not allocated that money to specific projects because the system may not do them next year but he wants to have the funding set aside.
He added the budget was not in the red based on what money the system has, because the money has been set aside.
“I am not planning when you see stuff like $1.2-million, I don't want to allocate it to projects we don't complete,” he added. “If I don't put it aside and just go with a black budget, I can’t use it. I want it to be programmed and my plan is to start going back when we complete these projects then probably within three years we will have a completely balanced budget.”
He added that the system has a good budget this year.
“We are in good shape and we will roll back property taxes as we always do and plan to get to as many projects as we can,” Supt. Lenderman said.