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Marengo schools collect $20,000 from communications

The Democrat Reporter of Linden, Alabama

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"The Black Warrior Tele-Communications has paid the Marengo County School System $20,000, "said Superintendent Luke Hallmark at the meeting Thursday, Jan. 28.

"The others that are participating in this are Linden School System, Demopolis School System, Sumter County School System, Greene County School System, and Greene County Hospital. We have put the $20,000 in a CD with $26,000 we already had."

"We (That are on the Black Warrior Tele-Communication board) all decided to give ourselves $20,000 each from the fund that is set up. This is good to be able to put some money away for our school system. At one time we thought this fund was going to go belly up, but it did not. This started out when Black Warrior Tele-Communication got a grant from Black Warrior Electric to put these little satellites antennas in trees and when the wind would blow, no signal."

"So Mr. Lloyd was worried about how we was going to pay back this $500,000 Grant Loan from Black Warrior Electric. WorldCom had the rights to the licenses and they went under and some else bought the rights to the licenses and they have been very generous to pay us this money.

We have three more years on this licenses deal that will pay us $60,000 more dollars. When this deal is up, we will re-bid the licenses out again"

The next thing on the agenda was the FY (Fiscal Year) 2011 Budget laid out by Gov. Bob Riley.

"The Budget that Gov. Riley has laid out is projecting there to be a 2.35% growth in the economy," said Hallmark. "And he is adding 345 million dollars to the budget, that right now is not there, that is suppose to come from a second stimulus bill (Jobs for Main Street Stimulus Bill) to come from President Barack Obama. And if this does not happen the way Gov. Riley believes it will, then it will be proration for the schools again. Because we don't have that money right now."

The money from the timber cut on the 16th section land has been deposited. But because the money was deposited after Oct. 1, 2009, the school system cannot get or use the money until after Oct. 1, 2010. This is money we use to pay on our line of credit. So we may have to extend our line of credit, according to Hallmark.

All of the seniors from three of the four high schools in Marengo County School System passed the Alabama High School Graduation Exam to be able to get their high school diploma or certificate.

New business items one and two, financial reports and bank statements reconciliations for December. Item three, new board members should go through orientation and board members have to go through a self evaluations. The board hopes to have this in place by March 1 to do self-evaluations and have them in place.

Item four, Presidents Day will not be a holiday and will be used as a weather make-up day due to the one full day missed in January due to the cold weather. Item five, budget amendment. Item six, bids for the new football field concession stand at Sweet Water High School and new football field bathrooms at A.L. Johnson High School. Item seven, hire a graduation coach at Sweet Water High School. The person to be hired is a retired Marengo County School teacher and will be paid $25 dollars an hour part-time and the money will come from the school improvement fund.

A motion was made by Arthur Hobson to pass all seven items and was seconded by Ernestine Wright and the passed the motion.

Hallmark will meet with a representative from Black Belt Lenses on Feb. 21. This organization gets students to get out and take pictures of different things.

Next meeting will be Feb. 25, at 4 p.m.



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Original Publication Date: February 4, 2010



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