Proposed school budget moves forward

Published 11:52 am Wednesday, April 24, 2019

One crucial item that is progressing along its path to consideration by the Charlotte County Board of Supervisors is the 2019-2020 draft budget for the operation of Charlotte County Public Schools. The draft budget operating cost for the upcoming year is $25,478,995.

While it may seem like the school system in the County has already stood center stage of the Board of Supervisors’ attention during its work on the County’s overall operating budget for the same fiscal year, there are important distinctions between the items.
According to the Virginia Department of Education, “Virginia’s public schools are financed through a combination of state, local and federal funds. Contributions also come from the private sector through partnerships with schools and school divisions.”

The Virginia General Assembly is responsible for apportioning what could be considered the lion’s share of funding to public schools through the Appropriations Act. Those funds are supplemented by a variety of sources such as retail sales, state lottery funds, counties, cities and towns also support public education through support of the Standards of Quality Program.

Finally, a quantity of federal aid does find its way to local school systems to support specific federal mandates.

By contrast, the financial shortfall that has resulted in an increase to both the real estate and personal property tax is primarily attributed to the principle due and interest accrued on loans to pay for the first phase of the school renovation and additions project.
It is separate and apart from the School System’s operating budget.
The amount of funding requested of Charlotte County by the School Board is $3,947,639.

A public hearing was held recently to give county residents an opportunity to offer comment on the School Board’s proposed draft budget.

A special called meeting of the Board of Supervisors to approve the Charlotte County School budget is scheduled for April 30 at 9 a.m.