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KCMS project gets some welcomed news

Posted by Stephen on March 13, 2007

In a resolution signed by Waynesboro City Council and the School Borad on December 12, 2006, which effectively bailed out the previous school board, the sources for the latest over-budget figure for the KCMS project of 1.1 million dollars was identified and agreed to.

The resolution states that the city will agree to give school board interest earnings from both the G.O. Bond of 13 million dollars and the Literary Loan Anticipation Note of 7.5 million dollars. The interest from these two sources was expected to provide a minimum of 550 thousand dollars. The balance of the 1.1 million dollars would come out of the city’s general fund, to be paid back by the school board through their portion of state lottery funds.

During Monday night’s City Council meeting, City Manager Doug Walker provided some much appreciated financial news. The interest accumulated is more than Walker anticipated.

“We have now reconciled, or accounted for the interest earnings…those earnings are $764,461.12,” said Walker who added, “The necessary amount of the fund balance needed to complete the project instead of 650 thousand dollars would be 435,538.88…the interest is higher than anticipated.”

Though the news was welcomed from every financial corner of the city, Councilman Frank Lucente felt that the original deal City Council made with the school board, which included two additional months of lottery funds to be dedictated to the project, would stay the same. However, School Board Chairman Doug Norcross disagreed stating, “I would have thought that would have come off the end and instead of two extra payments it would be one and a partial one.”

“I would hope the deal would stay the same since we’re probably going to have to pay a little more interest,” countered Lucente.

Walker attempted to quell any concerns being raised by Lucente by attempting to explain that the two men were saying the same thing. However, while Walker and Norcross were stating that the total amount of payback by the school would be adjusted to reflect the additional interest earned, Lucente was in fact suggesting that the school board should not adjust the dollar amount paid back, but in fact should pay two full lottery payments totaling the agreed upon 550 thousand dollars. It is Lucent’s assertion that the city tax payers will be paying additional interest as a result of the budget adjustments that have taken place.

Mayor Reynolds and former School Board Chair Lorie Smith offered support for an adjustment to the payback figure by way of comments that attempted to clarify Norcross’s statements during what amounted to a confusing exchange between the parties involved.

The latest total for the KCMS project currently rests at $21,800,000.

Stephen Winslow is the executive editor of Conservative Viewpoints.

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