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County rejects school system budget
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The Warren County School System budget has been sent back for cuts after Education Committee chairman Terry Bell reported it would take a 6-cent property tax increase to completely fund it.The disclosure came Monday night at a meeting attended by Director of Schools Dr. Jerry Hale.After introducing the subject, Bell got right down to business – and the bad news.“We’ve had a chance to look over it and I’ll just give you some information from Budget and Finance,” Bell said. “We’re coming up short in our general fund and we’re going to have to use some money from our debt service fund to cover it in order to make a budget without a tax increase. So if we actually try to put another 6 cents of property tax in the schools the only thing we could do is raise taxes.”Bell then outlined the financial issues that have generated the problem, one of those being the city’s lawsuit over the distribution of the local option sales tax.“Part of our shortfall is coming from the $400,000 in legal fees budgeted to defend the $2 million the school system is receiving for the next year,” Bell said.