School board members piled on the county commissioners on Tuesday with their complaints about getting $36 million less than requested.
All but Ron Margiotta took shots at the commissioners. You can find some of the quotes in today's article.
Here are several more from the meeting:
"I was very, very disappointed in what I heard." said Rosa Gill, chairwoman of the school board. "It was shocking and surprising, but I know that we have to make the best decision possible with the hand that you’ve been fed."
Beverley Clark, now former vice chairwoman of the board, stressed how they won't be able to offer the new programs they had wanted to add.
Patti Head called the commissioners' vote "shocking."
"To have a system like we have that is a shining example in North Carolina and in the nation, and put that in jeopardy — I think that just amazes us all," Head said.
Horace Tart repeatedly accused the commissioners of not acting in good faith relative to the proposal to turn over school construction to the county in return for a multi-year funding formula.
Tart accused commissioners of having a "$798 million slush fund."
Anne McLaurin echoed Tart's assessment of the commissioners' vote.
"To make a decision like this is completely irresponsible," McLaurin said. "We really can’t view this as a good faith effort of theirs.
Tart and Eleanor Goettee brought up the problems experienced in other school districts that members of both boards have toured.
Tart cited how Nashville schools have suffered a downward spiral due to a mayor who cut taxes, leading to underfunding of schools.
"Who on the Wake County board of commissioners wants the dubious honor of putting Wake County on a downward spiral?" Tart said.
Goettee said she would have hoped commissioners would have learned from these trips about the pitfalls of not properly funding schools. She likened the commissioners' vote to "starving" the school district.
Goettee said she didn't believe the public would find the lack of funding to be acceptable.
Lori Millberg also said that's not what citizens want. She urged the public to contact the commissioners to revise the budget.
Millberg warned that they might not be able to avoid making cuts that hurt academics.
"We can’t continue to be the leading school system in North Carolina with this kind of funding," Millberg said.
Millberg suggested that the county undergo an external audit of their financial practices like the ones the school system has experienced over the years.
The leadership of both boards are scheduled to meet today. It could get heated during the closed-door discussions.
One more thing from yesterday's meeting.
School board members weren't happy about the commissioners budgeting by purpose and function, providing the money in 18 categories. Kevin Hill said he wanted an explanation how the commissioners had the educational expertise to budget that way.
As the new vice chairman, Hill will get his chance to ask at today's leadership meeting.