Schools 'Find' Money, To Remain Open For Rec Council Use

March 15, 1992|By Anne Haddad | Anne Haddad,Staff writer

Recreation councils may continue to use schools for weekend sports and other activities, now that Board of Education administrators have found money to pay custodians.

Earlier this month, the schools realized they would run out of money to pay custodians overtime for weekend work.

Although private groups such as churches pay the custodian's weekend wages, the schools historically had not charged the recreation councils. Like the schools, the councils are part of county government and serve children.

But Vernon Smith, director of school support services, said it turns out schools do have the money for the weekend pay. Because the money was in another account, it had been overlooked, he said.

Appropriately, the money to be transferred to pay the custodians for recreation council work came from money paid by privategroups for the same service, he said.

Board of Education members,at their meeting Wednesday, asked why they have extra money if the private groups only are charged for the expenses incurred.

The answer lies in accounting and cash flow: The schools had budgeted $155,396 for the current budget year to pay for custodian overtime. The money was based on covering the cost of recreation council work, as well as a cash flow of $10,000 for paying custodians for the private groups.

When custodians worked on weekends for private groups, their pay came out of the same account the schools used to pay custodians forrecreation council work.

The Board of Education then would send an invoice to the private group for the exact amount of the custodian's overtime wages. When the groups reimbursed the schools, it went into another account -- the school system's general revenue account.

Smith said officials learned this month that much more than the $10,000 budgeted was paid out to custodians and reimbursed by private groups because of increased usage of schools.

The amount was about $26,000, he said. Because that money is more income than had been expected and is not assigned to any other use, it can be transferred back to the overtime budget. After all, Smith said, that's where the money came from to pay the custodians in the first place.

The board willvote at its April meeting on whether to allow the transfers. No members objected Wednesday when Smith told them he would be asking for the transfer.

Smith said he will ask for a transfer of about $20,000from the revenue account into the overtime account. That should cover recreation council activities through the end of June, which is theend of fiscal 1992, he said.

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