Schools Need Financial Accountability
Financial accountability for the 2020 and 2022 school bonds is a major concern for taxpayers. Guilford County Schools (GCS) has not started out well with the $300 million bond. In a recent Board of Education work session, the GCS Chief Financial Officer estimated the cost of the 2020 bond will be $470 million, even after dropping three of the promised 11 projects originally listed.
Ensuring the funding is utilized in most cost effective and efficient manner is a major concern for voters. Voters expect GCS to utilize the funding in the most cost effective and efficient manner. This money is coming out of the taxpayer’s pocket. The Rhino Times, July 22, 2022, reported Guilford County property owners would see the highest property tax rate hike in the nation estimated at 30 percent.
GCS facility needs are real. Our students deserve heating and cooling units that work, no leaky roofs, pleasing aesthetics and secure buildings. Parents voted for the $1.7 billion bond because they were told every school would be touched and these types of issues would be addressed. The 2020 bond explosion to $470 million means the $170 million overrun will most likely be subtracted from the $1.7 billion bond putting the promises made to the voters in jeopardy.
Inflation can explain part of the increase however, not a $170 million increase. Part of the overrun is due to design elements and part is due to poor project management. GCS needs strong project management to assure the $1.7 billion is utilized in the most cost effective and efficient manner possible making sure all schools, at a minimum, have major deferred maintenance issues addressed. The current board has not performed their fiduciary duty in providing strong checks and balances on spending. After financial policy changes June 2021, the superintendent has the highest spending authorization in NC including project change orders up to $500,000 with no reporting requirements to the board. Project change orders unchecked allow building costs to run rampant by expanding scope. Guilford County needs a board that will assure taxpayer dollars are not wasted and promises are kept to the voters! Vote Andrew, Pratt, Carter and Welborn for Guilford County Board of Education.
District 4 Guilford County Board of Education Member
Great article Linda. Your wishes will not come true and I believe you know this. The city, county councils and school board have never been accountable thus you have the facilities mess and poor student performance. I certainly will be voting!
They don’t care. It’s not their money. Easy come… easy go.
Government schools are an open sewer of indifference, incompetence, depravity, sexual perversion, bullying, violence, and ineptness. The government school monopoly exists in order to create well paid pretend jobs for “educators” who work 9 months a year, quit at 3pm, and who have just achieved the lowest ACT scores in 30 years (today’s news).
And the problem is definitely NOT a lack of money.
This monopoly must be destroyed. Vouchers…?
The funny part about this is Linda has been on the board for over 8 years. So now all of a sudden she’s worried about spending. What she won’t say is that because the county and voters have decided to repair or replace the majority of the black and brown schools , now it’s a problem. And their must be some spending issues. Typical political mumbo jumbo for someone who doesn’t care about all the students in Guilford County. Just those that live on one side of town.