Bath Supervisors consider unused school funds
Hot Springs, Va. – At Tuesday night’s Bath Board of Supervisors meeting, Bath School Superintendent Sue Hirsh asked the board to consider setting aside money returned by the school system to use on future school projects. At the end of this school year, the school system returned about $160,000 of appropriated funds to the county. That came from savings in salaries and health insurance. And another amount of just under $200,000 was also returned to the county. That was received from state and federal sources and had not been appropriated by the Board of Supervisors. At the direction of the Bath School Board, Superintendent Hirsh asked if the board would consider appropriating those returned funds and making a commitment to use them for future school projects. Hirsh mentioned two projects in particular: the high school auditorium which needs work to address humidity control there, and the high school parking lot which is eroded and uneven. The board agreed that more discussion was needed on the request. Chairman Cliff Gilchrest suggested that maybe it could be discussed at the quarterly joint meeting with the school board on August second. Superintendent Hirsh added that studies should be done to find the best solutions for the auditorium and the parking lot. And money would be needed for studies and the studies should be completed early enough to include the costs in the budget for the auditorium and the parking lot repairs.
The board voted Tuesday night to refinance the county’s debt from the high school renovation project. The board considered the best proposal it received, which was from SunTrust Bank. SunTrust offered both a ten year and a fifteen year term. Both loans are fixed rate with no balloon payment at the end of the term. The Board accepted the ten year term, which will give the county over $700,000 in savings over the ten years.
The board approved pursuing a USDA loan grant initiative that may allow the sheriff’s department to replace three vehicles this year. If the request is approved, the initiative would allow the county to purchase one vehicle, get a USDA loan on the second one and leverage the third through the grant. With both the purchase and the loan, the county’s match on the grant would be met, so the third vehicle could be obtained at no additional cost. The sheriff’s department had already budgeted to replace two vehicles this year.
Bath Emergency Services Coordinator Andy Seabolt reported that the Burnsville Rescue Squad was successful in obtaining a grant for a power loading cot system. They received about $7,000 from the 50/50 grant. And the Millboro Area Rescue Squad also received a grant for the purchase of a new ambulance. They are receiving over $100,000 from the state, with the 80/20 grant.
And the board appointed Jeff Wilson to the planning commission and reappointed Dr. James Redington and John Singleton to the airport authority.