published Thursday, May 5th, 2011

Hamilton school board delays vote on budget

by Adam Crisp

Hamilton County school board members tonight voted to delay action on $14 million in budget cuts.

The board instead will ask for a continuation budget that will fund the school system at its current level of $368 million until a budget is adopted. A full budget must be adopted by October in accordance with state law.

Board members said they wanted more information before approving a full budget. They also ordered there be no non-classroom hires or transfers until a budget is adopted sometime before June 15. The new fiscal year begins July 1.

Tonight’s meeting appeared to show at least some support for asking the Hamilton County Commission for more funding.

“We’ve been tightening our ship for five years,” said board member Chip Baker, noting at least $26 million in cuts over the last three years.

Board members George Ricks and Linda Mosley also indicated support for asking for more money.

“Ask your commissioners to adequately fund education,” Ricks said. “There is nothing wrong with it.”

Rhonda Thurman remained ardently opposed to the idea, calling it “immoral.”

See Friday’s Times Free Press for complete coverage.

about Adam Crisp...

Adam Crisp covers education issues for the Times Free Press. He joined the paper's staff in 2007 and initially covered crime, public safety, courts and general assignment topics. Prior to Chattanooga, Crisp was a crime reporter at the Savannah Morning News and has been a reporter and editor at community newspapers in southeast Georgia. In college, he led his student paper to a first-place general excellence award from the Georgia College Press Association. He earned ...

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