Monroe County School System in the Red - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

Monroe County School System in the Red

UNION, WV (WVVA) -- Monroe County is one of eight county school systems in West Virginia that are in the red.

State education officials consider the deficits of Braxton, Calhoun, Mason, Monroe and Preston counties as critical.

Clay, Pendleton and Webster counties have deficits that are considered less serious.

The State Department of Education audited Monroe County School Systems in May of 2012 and noted a serious deficit.

The audit reported that the school system was in the red by $664,803 at the end of 2011. When only a year before, the school system was in the positive with a balance of $253,372. 

That is a $918,175 difference.

The audit noted this difference in the report. "This decrease of $918,175 was a dramatic shift in the year-end carry-over balance that the board has available in just one year."

View the PDF of the audit report

The board has developed a corrective action plan as to how it will resolve the deficit that has been incurred and to strive to build up its carry-over balance to the minimum recommended by the West Virginia Department of Education.

The audit team commended the Monroe County School District's treasurer, despite the deficit.

According to the team, the board treasurer had been effectively communicating the deficit to the board, and demonstrated the  downward trend.

According to the treasurer, the number of employees continued to increase while student enrollment decreased.

During the review, the Team noted that year to date general fund expenditures as of January 2012 was $90,180 less than the same period in 2011. "While this reduction is a move in the right direction, more aggressive action will need to be taken to cause a positive fund balance at the end of fiscal year 2012."

The state Board of Education on Wednesday approved the counties' strategic plans to eliminate their deficits.

Board member Lloyd Jackson says financial problems are the top symptom of a school system that the state has to take over.

Four other county school systems already are under state control.

State superintendent of finance Joe Panetta says the state is taking a more active role in helping counties and monitoring their finances.

WVVA attempted to reach the Monroe County School Board Supervisor for comment. She was unable to be reached.


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