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School board seeks to form finance committee

Article Date: 
24 January, 2014 (All day)

The Morgan County School Board is on the search for residents to sit on a finance committee to take a close look at the district’s budget and also advise on money-saving tactics.
Applications will be available in February for the 15- to 20-member advisory committee.
Board member Mark Farmer said he is looking for “creative financial thinkers.”  He would also like to see the district and school board represented, but not necessarily in charge of the committee.
The school board discussed sending application information home with students, but Farmer said he didn’t want to restrict the committee to just parents of students.  
“We want a diverse cross section of people,” Farmer said.  
He hopes to get as many as 50 applications to choose from, and have the committee up and going by the second quarter of the year.
Superintendent Doug Jacobs suggested including representatives of city and county government, Morgan Education Foundation, school principals and school community councils.  Both Jacobs and board member Jody Hipwell emphasized the importance of including many representatives from the community at large.
Jacobs said he would particularly like to include people who have expressed interest in just such a committee in the past, especially those who actually came in to the district office to go through school finances and budgets.
“This is the board who is going to deal with the issues, vet ideas out.  It is for long-term financial planning,” Farmer said.  “We are soliciting ideas from the community.  The purpose of the committee is to understand nontraditional and traditional avenues.”
Farmer hopes to educate the committee about the various school financing tools available to the district.  He said the committee may look at the four-day school week and block schedule, among other things.