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School board approves $104 million budget

March 11, 1997

By KERRY LYNN FRALEY

Staff Writer

A proposed $1.3 million elementary school improvement grant program cut last month from the Washington County Board of Education's 1997-98 budget was restored Tuesday night when the board approved a final draft of its budget.

The budget - totaling just over $104 million - also includes $120,000 to expand school/family liaison services to all elementary schools, $110,000 to add two staff roofers and a plumber, and $300,000 to purchase six new buses, according to C. Christian South, director of budget and finance.

The school improvement grants, aimed at strengthening students' reading and math skills, and funding for additional family/school liaisons had been included in $4 million in cuts the school board made to Superintendent Wayne F. Gersen's proposed $106 million budget.

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The information and opinions school board members heard at three "Speak Out" meetings with school system employees helped influence their final budgetary decisions, School Board President B. Marie Byers said.

Roughly $2.5 million earmarked for "wage improvements" for all categories of school board employees remained untouched throughout the budget review process.

Other additions made Tuesday include:

  • $75,000 for salaries and benefits for two computer/audio technicians.
  • $13,000 for salaries and benefits for a part-time clerical assistance in information services.
  • $80,000 for the tuition reimbursement program.


This year's budget was just over $96.4 million, $47.2 million of which came from the Washington County Board of Commissioners.

The school board will present the 1997-98 budget to the Washington County Commissioners at 7 p.m. March 25 in the Kepler Auditorium at Hagerstown Junior College.

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