Anderson School District One Board gets preview of 2023-24 budget


During their meeting Tuesday, the Anderson School District One Board approved five policy changes, heard a draft budget presentation and were introduced to several new members of the athletic department at Palmetto High.
Ryan Norton was introduced as the new Head Football Coach at Palmetto High School. Norton has previously served as a Varsity Football Assistant at Powdersville. Tim Broome was introduced as the new Athletic Director at Palmetto High. Tim Jones, who was a coach at Pendleton, was introduced and will serve as the quarterback coach at Palmetto.
Wren High student Natalie Gilmer was also recognized as a Gold and Silver winner in the Scholastic National Art Competition.
Finance Director Travis Thomas reported Anderson County took in a record $3,631,000 from the Local Option Sales Tax for the month of December. AD1 received $1,208,000. Thomas said it was the highest amount collected to date. Of that $966,000 will go toward Capital improvements and $241,000 will go toward property tax relief.
The fund balance for the current building program is $4.8 million.
The new 2023-24 building program, which the District is in the process of beginning soon, has a fund balance of $21.9 million.
Superintendent Robbie Binnicker reported that work on the Palmetto baseball field is almost complete. The team has been able to use the new field for practice and the back stop net was to be installed this week. No fans will be allowed in the facility until a certificate of occupancy is obtained for the restroom building, Binnicker said. He said the project may be completed in two weeks and in time to play on it the week after spring break.
Finance Director Travis Thomas and Assistant Superintendent of Personnel Becky Brady presented preliminary information on the 2023-24 budget.
Thomas said that District One expects a net increase of $7,518,000 in revenues. However with an increase in mandated expenses of $7,588,000 and an increase in additional expenses of $5,030,000, the draft budget currently shows a $5.1 million deficit.

The expected increase in expenses is due to economic issues, decline in enrollment and ESSER funding ending, Brady said.
Brady explained projected staffing changes for Certified Staff, Classified Staff, Special Education and Multi Language staff at schools within the District.
Ten of seventeen teachers currently funded by ESSER will be absorbed by the District, however five new growth positions will have to be funded through the General Fund.
Overall, Brady said five additional teachers will be needed for schools, 6.5 teachers for Special Ed and 3 for ML. Two Classified (maintenance) staff are also needed.
State Mandated expenditures, primarily in salaries, benefits and EIA changes, will result in increased expense of $7,588,000.
Other expenditures including ESSER II funding ending, eleven percent above state mininum teacher scale and fringe, staffing incresases, all scales to 32 years, bookkeeper scale adjustment, aide scale adjustment, other salary adjustments, ESS lunch monitors, travel and supplies will result in additional budget expense of $5,030,00.
Based on the current information, the total net change in the General Fund will be a deficit of $5.1 million.
Information presented Tuesday is preliminary and will be updated at the next board meeting.
Adjustments to staffing and other expenses in the final budget will depend on final revenues from state funding and how Anderson County calculates the millage rate in regards to tax values from property reassesment in 2022.
In other action, the Board unanimously approved final reading on GLCE – Unencumbered Time policy.
First reading was held on revision of five other policies including: KEC – Public Concerns and Complaints about Instructional Resources, AR KEC-R – Public Concerns and Complaints about Instructional Resources; KEC-E – Concerns and Complaint Form, IJL – Library Materials Selection and Adoption and CCA – Organizational Chart for the District.
The Board also approved a change to use Linewize as the new District Internet Filter.
The Board then went into executive session regarding a student discipline issue.
A number of personnel and administrative recommendations were also approved by the Board.