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Can O'Malley pull the trigger?

November 28, 2006

And now, from the Here We Go Again department, another announcement from the Baltimore City School system.

It's been four years, but because the Baltimore system hasn't fixed problems found in a 2002 audit, it might lose millions in federal funds from a school technology program.

According to The Associated Press, we're not talking about a dispute over how millions in previously-received cash was utlitized.

Both sides agree that the Baltimore system cannot prove that computer equipment funded by the federal Schools and Libraries Program has been delivered or installed. Imagine that.

As a result, the fderal officials are asking for the return of $2.5 million. Until that's done, or the problems are otherwised resolved, Baltimore is ineligible for millions more from the same program.

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The system's response? On Dec. 12 the city school board is voting on a three-year $267,000 consulting contract to help the system fix problems noted in the audit.

The better solution, and the one that Gov.-elect and former Baltimore Mayor Martin O'Malley should back, is terminating those who lost track of millions meant to help the city's students.

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