3/30/19 Board to hear budgets, talk noise

Board to hear budgets, talk noise
By Isaac Groves, The Times-News 3/30/19    
Reprinted with permission.
GRAHAM — The Alamance County Board of Commissioners will hear budget requests from the school system — the county’s biggest expense — the community college, outside agencies and the Sheriff’s Office at its meeting at 9 a.m. Monday, April 1.

The current budget is close to $175 million. With $189.6 million in education bonds ready to be issued over the next few years, there will certainly be talk about a tax increase in the 2019–20 budget. With that in mind, probably, the school system is not asking for an increase in funding in the next budget, which is practically unheard of.

Sheriff Terry Johnson’s budget request wasn’t included in the commissioners’ agenda, but Johnson has talked about need for more staff and vehicles in the past year. There was close to $12 million for the Sheriff’s Office in the current budget.

Alamance-Burlington School System

$42.46 million request from Alamance County for 2019–2020, a 0 percent increase over current year $679,689 capital request

$3 million
included in the request for the local share of a 3 percent salary and benefit increase

0.25 percent
increase in local teacher supplement, now $4,647

$2.9 million
of the request is a continuation budget just maintaining current operations.

$1.1 million
expansion budget includes:

• $552,000: new hires

• $290,000: raises for four jobs after classified salary study showed those employees were underpaid

• $116,000: payroll to expand some positions for year-round and summer duties

• $50,000: training for principals and assistant principals

• $50,000: computer network upgrade

ABSS breakdown

22,681 students
— $8,390 per student

61 percent:
free and reduced lunches

13.8 percent:
special education 10 percent: English learners 3,331 employees 36 schools

Alamance Community College

current funding per fulltime student $4.7 million: total 2019–20 county funding request, of which $3.46 million is for operational expenses, a $164,973 increase over this year, or 5 percent Operations increase breakdown:

• $91,061: maintenance

• $55,170: utilities

• $18,742: salary and benefit increases $1.27 million: capital improvements, of which: $300,000: HVAC main building $450,000: main building chiller $33,500: roof repairs $150,000: dental assisting phase 2 $150,000: replace main building steps

lab and classroom upgrades

15-passenger bus

handrails and sidewalks for ADA compliance

campus-safety upgrades

Outside agencies

The county received close to $1.47 million in requests from 11 outside agencies, of which $828,821 would come from county funds. There are no new agencies making requests for the 2019–2020 budget.
Outside agency funding requests:

• Burlington Alamance Airport Authority: $262,321 request for 2019–20 budget; $262,321 funded in the 2018–19 budget

• Alamance County Transportation Authority: $200,000 request; $163,530 this year

• Alamance County Rescue Unit: $100,000 request; $100,000 this year

• Alamance Elder Care: $88,000 request; $86,100 this year

• Meals on Wheels: $70,000 request; $58,425 this year

• Alamance County Community Services Agency: $65,500 next year request; $58,026 this year

• Family Abuse Services: $40,000 request; $35,000 funded this year

• Piedmont Conservation Council: $3,000 request; $2,000 funded this year

Occupancy tax budget requests

• Alamance Arts: $100,000 request; $80,000 funded this year

• African-American Cultural Arts & History Center: $95,000 request; $25,000 this year

• Alamance County Historical Museum: $93,373 request; $84,000 funded this year

Other topics

The commissioners took no action on the noise ordinance Monday, March 18, after hearing from several property owners in a public hearing on the noise ordinance, excessive gunfire or industrial noise on nearby properties, but sounded like they were interested in time limits on excessive noise if nothing else. They have had two weeks to look over draft changes to the current ordinance and are scheduled to take the issue up again Monday.