By Kim Walter
On Wednesday, the Frederick County Board of Supervisors will hold a public hearing regarding an adjustment to the 2013 fiscal year budget in the amount of $3.9 million. The funds represent a portion of the county's budget surplus from fiscal year 2012, during which about $8 million more in revenue was collected than budgeted.
County staff has requested that the board split the funds between the county's general fund and the school system. The split of those funds would result in the school division receiving $2.2 million.
County Administrator John Riley has suggested that the county's share of funds be used for a 3 percent supplement to county staff, and to address equipment needs throughout county departments.
While it is up to the school system how it's share of the funding will be spent, the division's coordinator of communications, Steve Edwards, said he anticipates that "the school board will give consideration to using the school division's share of the funds for a 3 percent bonus for FCPS employees."
"That would mirror the recommendation Mr. Riley has made for county government employees as well as what state employees are expected to receive later this year as a result of the state's budget surplus," Edwards said Monday.
However, the one time supplement for school system staff would cost $2.4 million, and the supervisors finance committee has endorsed a request by the school board to carry forward $1.1 million in unspent money from its operating fund. The school's surplus was reported to the school board at its meeting on Aug. 20, and it was suggested to be spent on several projects and departments throughout the school system.
If the $2.2 million is approved by the Board of Supervisors to go to the school systems at Wednesday's meeting, the school board could determine as early as Oct. 16 how those funds will be utilized, Edwards said.
"Regardless of the action taken [on Wednesday] the school board remains committed to addressing salaries and benefits in a way that can be sustained," he added.
Contact staff writer Kim Walter at 540-465-5137 ext. 191, or firstname.lastname@example.org