Schools getting $1.5M from jobs bill

The Chilton County School System will receive about $1.5 million through the federal jobs bill recently passed by Congress.

The bill was intended to help save the jobs of teachers and support personnel such as custodians, secretaries and bus drivers.

Chilton County Superintendent Keith Moore said the money could end up saving between 15 and 20 local jobs that might have otherwise been lost in today’s economy.

“It could be used to pay for salaries or locally funded teacher units,” Moore explained.

Steve Yeargan, chief financial officer for the school system, said jobs would most likely be safe through 2011 because of a $1.8 million stabilization fund allocated for two consecutive years.

The system is also receiving $1.5 million from the state’s Education Trust Fund for other current expenses. Yeargan said the system should be able to handle proration up to 8 percent, although he is hoping it will not exceed 5 percent this year.

“We were told to prepare for a 5-percent proration,” Moore said.

Gov. Bob Riley will not be able to declare proration until the new fiscal year begins Oct. 1.

School officials will be waiting to see if the governor makes an announcement before the end of his term.

The Chilton County Board of Education held its first budget hearing Thursday and will hold another Tuesday, Sept. 14 at 4 p.m. The next regular meeting is scheduled for the following Tuesday, Sept. 21, at 4 p.m.

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