Albemarle Supervisors Turn Down $1.3 Million in Extra Money for Schools

May 14, 2014

The Albemarle County Board of Supervisors opted Wednesday night not to give the schools more than $1 million in additional funding.

They were considering giving them $1,285,000 in one-time funds for next school year.

The extra money would have come out of the county's Capital Improvements Program.

"When we pull that money for one thing, we're taking it away from another thing," supervisor Liz Palmer said before the vote.

The money would have been used to pay for things like professional development, interpreter services, and Safe Schools.

School board chair Ned Gallaway said they have not prioritized the projects on their list of potential one-time funding options.

"The school board has not voted on projects to say, 'We would do this first, second or third,'" Gallaway told supervisors.

Supervisors expressed interest in having more say in how the schools would actually spend any extra money.

"I don't think it gets anything done because we don't know where the money is going to. We're post-appropriation. We've finished a budget," said supervisor Jane Dittmar. "I think it's time for the school board to give us permission to figure out where we'd like to put some more money just like we did when we funded Bright Stars."

The decision came down to a 4-to-2 vote. Supervisors Diantha McKeel and Brad Sheffield were the two who supported granting the schools' request.

Supervisors also tossed around the idea of appropriating a smaller amount of money -- $500,000 -- but that motion failed in a 3-to-3 vote. Supervisor Liz Palmer voted for it, along with McKeel and Sheffield.

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