Saturday, June 12, 2021
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King: Putnam School Budget Needs Funding To Remain Competitive

Putnam County School System’s new fiscal year budget has a roughly $2 million budget shortfall as the county awaits final tax numbers.

Director of Schools Corby King presented the budget to the County Commission’s Budget Sub-Committee at a meeting Thursday night. King said the system is positioned well but needs to keep up with growth in the county.

“The places I really want us to drive home, and focus on, and make sure that we cover, I mean all of these are needed expenses, but the employee raise, and the janitorial, the cost of the services, I mean those are big for us to remain competitive we need to move forward,” King said. 

The school system’s current revenue projection of $95 million includes some $57 million in state BEP funding. Expenditures currently stand at $97 million, with about 80 percent of that coming from personnel costs.

“We are people-driven,” King said. “It takes people to educate, to transport our kids, to provide services in our classroom. This is by far the largest piece, and you’ll see when we get to the increase, some of y’all are already doing the quick math, it’s a little over $2 million, most of that is in people. It’s in salaries and wages.”

The biggest personnel expanse is a four percent across the board raise for all staff. 

The system only plans to add 5 positions currently, including a first-time Upperman High School drama teacher, a paid attendance assistant at Cookeville High School, and three positions to help with special needs students at Baxter Primary School.

King also shared long-term goals for the school system including construction of the new K-8 schools. King said at an earlier budget work session that the system needed to begin work on that school this year to meet enrollment projections down the line.

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